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Commercial buildings required to have charging facility, others green rooftops

New construction to be done by taking parking requirements of customers and visitors into consideration

In a bid to protect the environment, the Divisional Environment Committee (DEC) on Thursday approved new conditions for construction of any commercial buildings.

The decision to make the building laws stricter was taken by Divisional Environmental Committee on Thursday, presided by Lahore Commissioner Capt. (retd) Muhammad Usman.

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Before construction of any commercial building, an owner needed to acquire no objection certificate (NOC) from the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) and the concerned Town. After the approval of new conditions, every commercial building will have to follow the new plan.

According to the new decision, every commercial building would ensure the parking area for the customers and visitors of the buildings while every building would ensure that a majority of its rooftop was green.

“All buildings will be required to make at least 70 percent area of their roof top green. Every commercial building will ensure availability of charging facility for electric vehicles in its parking areas,” according to the decision made by the committee.

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It was also decided in the meeting that all the petrol pumps in Lahore division would also be obligated to provide electric charging facilities for obtaining environmental NOC.

Earlier, EPA used to put various conditions while awarding NOC to any commercial building. Most of the time, these conditions were to plant 2,000 trees, to install water treatment plants, to submit a monthly environmental report to field offices, to install separate lines for sewage water and grey water, to construct eco-friendly and energy efficient buildings and to follow building by-laws.

However, it has been observed that many commercial buildings constructed recently remained reluctant in compliance with the conditions mentioned in their NOCs.

Environmentalists have welcomed the new conditions for the commercial buildings, saying that city’s environment can be improved if authorities ensured such conditions.

World Wildlife Fund Pakistan Climate Change Director Dr. Masood Arshad said that besides adding such conditions, there was a dire need to ensure the compliance of such conditions.

He said that following the deteriorating environmental conditions of our cities, authorities should designate areas out of the cities for construction of commercial buildings so that traffic flow in the cities could be reduced.


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