Energy-efficiency houses based on the German model are being built in a district of Delhi. KfW is financing 2,000 apartments, which together will save 37,000 tonnes of CO₂ per year.
From the outside, the development in ”Lotus Panache“ is no different from other high-rise districts in Greater Delhi. The uniform residential towers rise up as high as 32 storeys into the hazy sky above the Indian capital. Some balconies have potted plants, or laundry hanging from the line. Air conditioners cling to the beige or pale red facades. This is certainly an upgrade on the residential housing market for anyone who manages to find a new home here. Apartments in one of the towers are coveted properties by the middle class. In one aspect, ”Lotus Panache“ sets itself apart from similar housing complexes in the surrounding area: the buildings were constructed in line with energy efficiency criteria.
Construction work is currently suspended during our visit to the complex. Anish Sharma, an architect at The 3C Company, explains that ”due to the high level of air pollution,“ construction sites are not allowed to work for ten days. The company is committed to building in accordance with certified environmental principles and is the ”leader in India“ in this field, says Sharma. KfW is supporting the sustainable approach with a loan to the National Housing Bank which, thanks to this financial injection, is able to grant loans to property buyers who attach importance to resource efficiency and low emissions.
KfW co-financed 2,000 ”green“ apartments with a loan of EUR 50 million granted seven years ago. The environmental outcome of the financial cooperation can be described as follows: electricity consumption will be reduced by 40,000 megawatt hours and carbon emissions by 37,000 tonnes per year. ”The programme thus contributes to climate change mitigation and sustainable economic growth,“ says Carolin Gassner, Head of South Asia at KfW, explaining KfW Development Bank's commitment.
The environmental requirements make the apartments ”slightly more expensive“ than conventional ones, says Sharma. They cost between the equivalent of EUR 61,000 for a three-room apartment and EUR 150,000 for a five-room apartment. Interest and repayment are not to exceed 35.40 per cent of household income according to the criteria established by the National Housing Bank. According to estimates, this is the equivalent of EUR 1,200 per month in this district.
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In contrast to the noise and chaos in the centre of Delhi, the fenced Lotus Panache area is pleasantly quiet. Noida is only 25 kilometres away from the city centre.
Sharma explains on a tour what residents get for their money from The 3C Company Air conditioning is of course a huge issue in a place with an average annual temperature of 32 degrees. The ”green“ high-rises are designed so that the window fronts are shaded at those times of the day when the sun's rays are strongest. The concrete used is particularly effective at insulating against heat. Solar panels provide hot water. Sensors switch off the lights in the hallways when no one is there. Toilets are flushed and green areas watered with treated waste water. For its designs, The 3C Company also uses software for energy-efficient construction developed by the Stuttgart-based Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics.
Architect Sharma estimates the ”green“ apartments to achieve energy savings of 25 per cent and anticipates ancillary costs to be 20 per cent lower than in comparable conventional apartments such as the thousands being built in Noida, where ”Lotus Panache“ is located.
Noida first came into being in 1976 and is short for New Okhla Industrial Development Authority. As the name says, the district was originally planned as an industrial park. Today, 650,000 people live here, and the number is rapidly on the rise. Noida, located on the east side of the Yamuna River in the state of Uttar Pradesh, has the highest per capita income of any municipality in the metropolitan region of Delhi with its 24 million inhabitants. Foreign high-tech, media and Internet companies have all established themselves here.
A popular address for the middle classes, Noida is divided into sectors on the city map (”Lotus Panache“ is part of sector 110). Due to the housing shortage and high land prices, Delhi is increasingly building higher buildings. Some of the highest buildings in the Indian capital are already located here, others are growing, such as the Spira skyscraper at the entrance to the satellite city. Its 58 floors will reach a total height of 300 metres. A 120-square-metre apartment here costs the equivalent of EUR 220,000.
When everything is finished in ”Lotus Panache“, 12,000 people will live in approximately 4,000 apartments. It is only one kilometre to the city motorway, and a metro line connects Noida to the centre of the capital 25 kilometres away. But ”Lotus Panache“ is meant to be more than a place to sleep. The 3C Company has grouped the ”green“ houses around a centre with a supermarket, chemist and hair salon. There is a place for residents to meet; swimming pools, children's playgrounds, green areas and outdoor fitness equipment are available to the general public. The subterranean car park under the complex has space for 6,000 vehicles.
In Germany, KfW's financing has made a key contribution to firmly establishing energy efficiency standards in the real estate market. Now it's time to let others benefit from these experiences as well: with its programme for which KfW has also provided loans, the National Housing Bank has supported the purchase of a total of 20,000 environmentally certified homes. The economical use of energy in the home is becoming a matter for the global climate in a country the size and with the development momentum of India. Already a quarter of all electricity sold in India is consumed in residential buildings. But the construction boom has only just begun. Of the apartments that experts expect to be built in 2030, just 30 per cent are already standing.
Published on KfW Stories: Wednesday, 19 December 2018