Showcase Building at Gwarko, Lalitpur

Monday May 22, 2023


With the help of BEEN’s technical assistance, a showcase building was constructed in Gwarko, Lalitpur. The site is elongated and rectangular, with a plot area of 2305 Sq.ft (0-6-3-0) and access to roads in the south. The building is open on two sides, i.e. north, south direction and attached to the east, west direction – one of the prevalent practices for construction on such sites.

To achieve energy efficiency, the building has thoughtfully incorporated passive design strategies as its first step. To maximize natural light and fresh air circulation, the purposefully positioned void in the center makes the most of solar exposure and prevailing winds in the lobby and corridor. Other living areas like bedrooms, the kitchen, and the dining area are strategically placed towards the south and north with openable windows.

To prevent heat loss, only two specific rooms with openings towards the north have been suggested to have double-glazed windows, while the others have single-glazed ones. The windows on the south side have been properly shaded in the form of a terrace to lessen the solar heat gain through the openings in the summer.

Instead of the more common 9 inches solid clay bricks, the exterior wall of this building is constructed of 7.5 inches thick perforated fired clay bricks. The use of perforated bricks, which have holes that act as thermal insulators, ensures that interior living spaces are comfortable.

The building not only showcases various energy and resource efficient as well as renewable energy measures such as the application of perforated bricks, double glazing units, use of proper shadings, openable windows, solar water heaters, solar PV units, but also showcases other green building features like rainwater harvesting, and grey water treatment plant and bio-sand filters to purify water.

From this building, the overall CO2 emission is reduced by 3.37 tons, equivalent to C02 emission by a typical car driven for approx. 14000 km.