• Comprising four storeys, AEON Mall Mean Chey has a total gross floor area of about 298,000 square metres with approximately 250 retail lots. It was opened on Dec 15, 2022.

PHNOM PENH (May 16): GreenRE Sdn Bhd on Thursday awarded AEON Mall Mean Chey in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, with Gold certification under the non-residential category.

Comprising four storeys, AEON Mall Mean Chey has a total gross floor area of about 298,000 square metres with approximately 250 retail lots. It was opened on Dec 15, 2022.

At the ceremony, GreenRE executive director Ashwin Thurairajah said, “GreenRE is proud to commemorate its first certified project in Cambodia and Southeast Asia. May this be a platform for further expansion in the region.”

On the importance of receiving the certification, AEON Mall (Cambodia) Co Ltd managing director Endo Fumihiko said, “Green buildings help us, in terms of design, construction and operation, to reduce or mitigate detrimental effects on the environment while also having the potential to create beneficial outcomes.

“[For] AEON Mall Mean Chey, it will benefit us in terms of operating cost savings and increased asset value. [Overall], the mall was designed with the occupant’s health and comfort in mind by having better air quality and more natural daylight. This can lead to better tenant productivity and make the property’s value higher at the same time, as the building contributes positively to the environment.”

Presenting some of the mall’s green features, AEON Mall (Cambodia) construction and development deputy manager Sok Seak said the mall was designed to maintain sustainability standards following GreenRE’s requirements and is fitted with some of the latest green innovations.

These include LED lighting, chiller plants, solar panels on rooftops and waste management systems, as well as recycling facilities and electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, among others. The mall also has an outdoor park called Komsan Park, which houses over 50 species of tropical plants that are easy to maintain.

To ensure these green features are maintained to serve their purpose for the long term, Sok said the management has put in place a corrective maintenance plan that includes planning, monitoring and active management.

Elevating Cambodia’s green building platform

On the same day, GreenRE signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Cambodia Green Building Council (CamGBC) to provide support and knowledge with regards to green buildings.

At the signing ceremony, Ashwin said, “Having completed the certification for the mall, CamGBC has invited us to become a strategic partner to assist in developing their own local green certification tool, developing human capital through training and learning development activities as well as driving further membership into the council.”

Ashwin also elaborated on the terms of the MOU, including CamGBC recognising GreenRE as an international certification partner on a non-exclusive basis; GreenRE contributing 5% of the certification fees in the first year and 10% of the fees thereafter, from Cambodian projects to CamGBC; joint creation of platforms and/or events for awareness and education; provision of support and guidance to CamGBC members in matters related to green building certification.

Representing CamGBC, its president Chea Bunseang said, “I hope when GreenRE comes in, with education and training, we will be able to build the first generation to know what green buildings are all about. The outcome from the training is to have our CamGBC members (be) on par with other GBC members.

“After the first batch is trained, they will take over the training and we will expand our human resource. Not only architects, but also mechanical engineers and other professionals will be part of the training,” Che added.

CamGBC is a non-governmental organisation under the Architects Association of Cambodia.

Additionally, GreenRE director Datuk Rick Cheng said Malaysia was also once a beginner on matters related to green buildings and learnt aplenty from the Green Mark Certification Scheme in Singapore over the past years.

“When we first started GreenRE, it was modelled after Green Mark and they were happy to teach us. Today, we can be the same again, learn and adopt from GreenRE. We are not using the same model as Singapore anymore because there they have a lot of high-rise buildings whereas in Malaysia, we have more landed developments.

“But Cambodia and Malaysia are very similar in a sense where we build a lot of landed properties and of course some high-rise as well. In time, you can do the same thing as we did, which is tweaking the model to suit your own country,” Cheng advised.

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