Monday, May 30, 2011

New mandatory standards set for villas in Abu Dhabi

All villa owners in Abu Dhabi need to comply with new sustainability standards issued by Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council which aims to reduce energy, power and water consumption.

According to the Urban Planning Council and the Abu Dhabi Municipality, the water consumption will double in the next decade, while that of electricity will triple. Therefore, these need to be tackled as part of the 2030 sustainability vision.

Officials at the UPC have emphasized that all villa and government building owners are required to comply immediately with the sustainability (Estidama) requirements under the ‘One Pearl’ rating, which is mandatory for all property owners.

The UPC has now made the Estidama Pearl Villa Manual public, and is now available online to assist villa owners, contractors, consultants and suppliers who are required to maintain the said standards during construction of villas.

The Pearl rating is now mandatory for all properties across Abu Dhabi. There are four other ratings in pipeline, and the property owners are required to abide by the total of five pearl ratings, as per the sustainability requirements to build a property.

To further help the villa owners abide by the Estidama requirements, the UPC and Municipal System across Abu Dhabi have announced a series of nine workshops recently completed across public and certain private entities.

The Programme Manager for Estidama, Eng. Majid Rashid Al Za’abi said that apart from workshops and Pearl Villa Manual being made available to public, the real estate agencies and consultants will have to undergo an exam, namely the Pearl Qualification Professions (PQP), to gain certification under the pearl ratings.

He re-iterated that as of now, the sustainability measures are applicable to commercial buildings across the emirate, with particular focus on owned properties (villas and government entities) of all buildings in Abu Dhabi. But, it will be done in phases.

The Pearl Villa Manual can be accessed at www.estidama.org. The manual renders an overview on Estidama Pearl Villa Rating System (PVRS) and guidance on the application process for new and existing users of the programme.

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