Sunday, July 24, 2011

Green’s the way to go

Nagarjun Vallurupalli, Director, Surya Ray Elixir Pvt Ltd, is the owner of not just a beautiful house, but India’s first platinum-rated green home, certified by the Indian Green Business Council.

Away from the chaotic lanes of Jubilee Hills, Arjun and his wife, Sarada’s mansion overlooks the blue sky and a green-hued lake. It’s not just the surroundings, the interiors of his house, Avani (named after their daughter), are equally natural and eco-friendly. “I always wanted to have a green home. My research in 2007 led me to the LEED Certification initiative in the US. And I subsequently decided to seek help from IGBC to build a green home,” states Arjun.

The entrance on the second floor opens into a huge open area encompassing the living area, dining area and the lounge. There are no dividing walls and the double-glaze glass used on the tall wall-to-wall windows keep the heat at bay. “What you see is old teak wood or 80-90-year-old wooden blocks-reused from old, damaged houses,” confesses Arjun. Bamboo tiles — the most recyclable form of wood, has been used for the flooring.

The breakfast area overlooking natural rocks conserved during construction is fascinating. The house also boasts a rooftop garden with a seating area and a lotus pond. Measures have been taken to ensure that the house is energy and water efficient. The entire house runs on solar energy. To minimise the use of electricity, the house has open-to-sky toilets, heat recovery wheels and sun-pipes, directing sunlight to the lower-most parts of the house, providing natural light to the garage and storage areas. The low-VOC paints ensure less pollution. LED lights and motion sensors preserve energy. Grey water in the house is reused for flushing the toilets and gardening.
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