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Real estate sector bats for green spaces

By Aneeka Chatterjee
Last updated on: November 27, 2023 12:57 IST
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Bengaluru recorded the highest green building stock at 140 million square feet, followed by Delhi-National Capital Region at 74 msf, and Hyderabad at 72 msf for Grade A office buildings as of September 2023.

Photograph: Kind courtesy Concorde/Instagram

The Indian real estate market is embracing green buildings due to a heightened environmental consciousness among corporates and investors.

They are willing to pay a premium to comply with global sustainability norms and provide a healthy workplace for employees.


In 2023, the office real estate market in India witnessed a significant shift towards sustainability, with an 83 per cent growth in green office stock compared to 2016, according to a recent report titled Sustainable Real Estate: An Opportunity to Leverage by KPMG in India and Colliers.

The report considers the period after the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 came into force in 2016 to safeguard the interests of homebuyers and encourage real estate investments.

The joint report further revealed that Bengaluru recorded the highest green building stock at 140 million square feet (msf), followed by Delhi-National Capital Region at 74 msf, and Hyderabad at 72 msf for Grade A office buildings as of September 2023.

The number of green-certified buildings has seen a fivefold increase since 2010, with 61 per cent of India's total Grade A office stock being green-certified.

In the face of global warming, where India is grappling with environmental challenges such as landslides, untimely monsoons, droughts, and floods, adopting sustainable practices is not just an option but a necessity.

Consequently, the real estate sector integrates sustainable solutions into its operations across different phases of the project life cycle.

For instance, Concorde Realtors plans to unveil over 2 msf of commercial biophilic workspace over the next two years with a strategic investment of Rs 225 crore.

Biophilic design aims to create buildings and spaces that connect people with nature.

In the current year, the company has allocated Rs 100 crore for building sustainable workspaces in Bengaluru.

Green office spaces account for 5 per cent of Concorde's overall portfolio across the residential and commercial segments.

According to Concorde, biophilic spaces offer several advantages over conventional workspaces.

In terms of design and innovation, these workspaces provide a healthier working environment with a low carbon footprint.

On the other hand, green workspaces come at a premium with higher leasing and rental costs.

"Going forward, all our commercial spaces will be biophilic with designs that contribute to a healthy workforce and improved lifestyle... Our workspaces integrate natural elements such as plants, natural light, and water features that engage all five senses and bridge the widening gap between humans and nature," said Grishma Reddy, director, Concorde.

"We have incorporated terrace balconies in all our commercial spaces as a standard to promote open-air workspaces as we aim to provide top-notch commercial properties that redefine the way people work," she added.

Ocus Group, the Gurugram-based real estate company, has incorporated and prioritised sustainable features in its project Ocus Medley at Dwarka Expressway.

According to the realtor, the building's structure, design, layout, landscaping, and facade adhere to an energy-efficient model.

"There is a growing demand for sustainable development, and investors are willing to pay a premium. Such developments not only align with long-term environmental goals but also tend to yield better returns, making them a prudent investment choice," said Vinod Rajpaul, chief executive officer at Ocus Group.

Bengaluru-based Brigade Enterprises has also taken steps to push its sustainability agenda.

Certified by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and the Indian Green Building Council, Brigade has over 6 msf of certified built-up green area.

"While sustainable development goes hand in hand with our core values of being socially responsible -- it also helps in the business aspect of creating superior products that are easier to sell or lease. After the emergence of Covid, a lot more importance is being given to wellness from an employee or customer standpoint," said Nirupa Shankar, joint managing director, Brigade Group.

Brigade believes that employers, especially multinationals, desire offices where sustainable and environment-friendly practices can be adopted.

"With this in mind, we have created a sustainability platform within our startup portfolio at the Brigade Real Estate Accelerator Programme (Brigade Reap). About 30 per cent of the 66 startups mentored in the programme are in the sustainability space," Shankar added.

Developers and occupiers are collaboratively advancing towards building and operating high-performance, carbon-neutral, and sustainable office buildings.

"Green commercial portfolios can be built by using local, recyclable, and low-carbon materials for construction, choosing low-carbon emission construction methods, effective building design for optimum efficiency, deploying renewable energy resources, and applying for green certifications in early stages of development," said Vimal Nadar, senior director and research head, Colliers India.

Feature Presentation: Aslam Hunani/

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Aneeka Chatterjee
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