Eco-friendly infra must be inexpensive, simple: Experts

Emphasising that eco-friendly infrastructure must be cost effective, experts from various industries said sustainability must be at the centre of development.

Business Wire India
Sustainability needs to be at the centre of infrastructure development.
Emphasising that eco-friendly infrastructure must be cost effective, experts from various industries said sustainability must be at the centre of development.

Calling for inexpensive eco-friendly measures, NVS Reddy, managing director, Hyderabad Metro Rail Limited, said: “Creating mass transit systems costs a lot. Currently, it would cost Rs 300 crore/km to create an elevated form of mass transit and Rs 600-1,000 crore/km for underground transit.” He said that this is why the Metro project was carried out through public-private partnership making it viable for users. Reddy was speaking at a conference on ‘Sustainability in Built Environment’ here on Friday.

Addressing a conglomeration of architects and students, Reddy said that sustainability needs to be at the centre of infrastructure development. Citing an example, he said fly ash was used with concrete almost 35% of the time in the Metro project to make it cost-effective and environmental-friendly.


Experts at the meet said there was a need to focus on simple measures to make buildings more sustainable. “Architects underestimate the value of insulated roofs, shading devices and solar energy options in buildings,” said Kavita Daryani Rao, vice-chancellor, Jawaharlal Nehru Architecture and Fine Arts University, playing down the need for air conditioning in buildings over “indigenous measures”.

Agreeing about the need to use simple techniques before integrating technology and expensive material into building designs, Dubai-based architect, Farid Esmaeil, said: “Passive cooling techniques must be the first priority to cut heat.” He said allowing natural light to penetrate buildings as well as taking wind direction into consideration can considerably cut heat. Giving a different perspective, Bengaluru-based architect, Chitra Vishwanath said that the cost of any project must be evaluated in terms of the damage it does. “We might have saved on cost by going over-ground with Metros in cities, but what about the decades-old trees lost?” she asked. She said reduction in consumption is only way towards being ecologically-sensitive.

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