Zayed National Museum wins Estidama 3 Pearl Rating
Saadiyat Island museum is scheduled to be opened in 2016
The Urban Planning Council (UPC) has awarded the Zayed National Museum on Saadiyat Island in Abu Dhabi a 3 Pearl Design Rating Certificate as part of its Estidama Pearl Building Rating System.
The museum, which is being developed by the Tourism Development and Investment Company (TDIC), is the second cultural institution on the island, after the Louvre Abu Dhabi, to be awarded the prestigious environmental accolade.
Designed by the award-winning architect Lord Norman Foster, the museum has incorporated a number of sustainable design elements which have resulted in a 30% reduction in energy consumption and a 28% reduction in water use.
While the museum’s energy savings have largely been a result to its use of space cooling, fans and interior lighting in the premises, its savings in water consumption have been due to its use of water reducing fixtures and fittings, and reduced flow duration for restroom faucets.
Ali Al Hammadi, deputy managing director, TDIC, said: "We are very pleased that the Zayed National Museum has earned a Three Pearl Rating Certificate, as strict measures had been taken to ensure that environmentally sustainable features will be present throughout the museum’s journey from inception to construction to operations.”
“This not only reinforces our commitment to the environment, but also reflects the environmental vision and measures set out by our late President Sheikh Zayed, which we continue to implement to this day,” Al Hammadi added.
The Zayed National Museum is a tribute to the late President of the UAE, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, featuring five towers reminiscent of the wing tips of the falcon, a symbol of the rich cultural heritage of the UAE.
Dr. Nathalie Staelens, head of environmental services, TDIC, said: "The museum’s design not only utilises energy efficient methods but incorporates them in a unique, understated way that does not distract from its overall design.”
“For example, the wing tip towers feature solar panels to allow for water to be heated in an eco-friendly manner,” Dr. Staelens said. “Once operational, all of the museum’s water heating will be provided through these solar panels."
More sustainable design measures have been planned for the museum as it is being developed. When completed, the museum’s main building will be located under an earth mound, which will reduce solar gains to almost zero, and also reduce structural heat transfer.
It will also incorporate passive design measures that include natural ventilation and cooling from the wings of the structure, and an underground duct cooling system that will pre-cool the air naturally.
The museum also has a strong waste management plan in place.
Throughout its construction, all of the steel reinforcements used in the museum’s frame will include 25% recycled content, with at least 20% of the construction materials used to come from within 500 kilometres of the project’s site. Besides reducing the environmental impact from vehicle movement, this tactic also helps the local economy.
Another goal set by the museum’s construction team is to recycle or salvage at least 70% of all of the waste produced on-site. Waste glass, plastic, metal and paper will be sent to recycling facilities located within the Emirate.
The Zayed National Museum is scheduled to complete by 2016, with its neighbouring museums the Louvre Abu Dhabi and the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi to complete in 2015 and 2017 respectively.