King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (Kapsarc) has been named Saudi Arabia’s 'smartest' building by technology giant Honeywell at its Smart Building Score Awards event held in Riyadh.
The Kapsarc modular complex, designed by the world-renowned architect late Zaha Hadid, achieved the highest evaluation amongst all entries from Saudi Arabia, with impressive scores across all three smart building categories, said a statement from Honeywell.
The Honeywell Smart Building Score Awards programme assesses the smartness of buildings across the region based on three key indicators of smart buildings – how green, safe and productive they are.
The awards also recognise the region’s leading smart buildings, including the smartest airport, hotel, hospital, educational and retail facilities as well as the leading high-rise office and residential buildings.
"Saudi Arabia continues to make progress toward meeting its long-term sustainability and smart cities goals, and it will continue to do so in line with Saudi Vision 2030. Kapsarc is a fantastic example of voluntary leadership and smart building excellence in the kingdom,” remarked Norm Gilsdorf, the president for Honeywell’s Middle East, Russia and Central Asia regions.
The shortlisted entries for the Honeywell Smart Building Score Awards were independently audited by global advisory firm Ernst & Young, where Kapsarc was found to have scored exceptionally well in terms of how safe and green the facility is.
"For us at Honeywell, a smart building is one that is connected, safe, energy efficient and, ultimately, helps improve the quality of life for its occupants and users," stated Gilsdorf.
"We are very pleased to recognise Kapsarc’s dedication and investment in smart building solutions, and to highlight this best practice case as an example to be followed in Saudi Arabia and across the wider Middle East region," he added.
Built using the most advanced methods and technologies, Kapsarc achieved the first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (Leed) for Homes Gold Certification outside of North America for the centre’s residential facilities.
It also achieved Leed NC Platinum Certification for its research office complex, marking its leadership in sustainable stewardship in the Middle East.
Mohammad Tassi, the director of Kapsarc facilities management department, said its facilities have been designed and constructed as an example of building excellence in Saudi Arabia and the region.
"Designed by the world’s most respected and creative design offices, the buildings are not only visually fascinating, but also environmentally sustainable and functional. We are delighted to be recognised by Honeywell on the regional and international stage," he added.
Dozens of entries from across the region were received for the awards through the Honeywell website. This was followed by on-site checks by Ernst & Young to spot the highest scoring buildings, which assessed the effective use of 15 technology assets in a facility, including energy efficiency, fire safety and detection, data infrastructure and uninterrupted power supply.
The evaluation criteria was developed as part of the Honeywell Smart Building Score, which was launched in March 2016.
The research evaluated 620 buildings across seven major Middle East cities including Abu Dhabi, Dammam/Dhahran, Doha, Dubai, Jeddah, Kuwait City and Riyadh.