Essay: Sustainable Infrastructure in 2007

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Sustainable Infrastructure

In 2007, Glasgow was selected to be the host to the 2014 Commonwealth Games. This is the largest sporting event ever to be held in Scotland and it is the opportunity for the city to showcase its unique culture, diversity and sustainable practices. These areas are demonstrating how it is a world class destination. That is capable of meeting the requirements necessary for hosting large scale projects. (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

However, proper planning and support must be provided to ensure that all deadlines are met by the time the games begin later this year. Otherwise, there is the possibility of the city's reputation being damaged from a lack of planning for the demand it will face at different venues. A good example of this occurred in 2010 when New Delhi was hosting the Commonwealth Games. They were far behind on many different projects and were not prepared for the influx of visitors. This raised concerns about security and the ability of the venues to meet the demands of the athletes and spectators. (Problems Faced by 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games 2010) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

Commenting about these challenges was India's top badminton player and the games ambassador (Saina Nehwal) who said, "Looking at the stadiums and looking at the progress, I don't really think we are capable of holding such big tournaments. I have seen many games like Commonwealth Games in Melbourne and the Olympic Games in China. Compared to that, it's not up to the mark. I'm sure before October 3, it will be ready and people will like it but in comparison to those Games, things are not up to the mark." (Problems Faced by 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games 2010) This is showing how the Commonwealth Games became a source of embarrassment for New Delhi. These issues were the result of poor planning and the inability of officials to deal with a variety of challenges. The result is that many athletes boycotted the games, as they were fearful for their security and comfort during the event. (Problems Faced by 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games 2010) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

To avoid these challenges, Glasgow must take a different approach. It is focusing on offering the fans and athletes with all of the amenities they have come to enjoy. While at the same time, it will ensure that sustainable practices are used to control costs and reduce the environmental impact. To fully understand how this will be achieved requires focusing on the sustainability of the Athletes Village. This will be accomplished by examining the approach / uncertainty, specific actions / the costs, benchmarking and interdependencies. Together, these different elements will highlight the way Glasgow can meet these needs and become an example for other cities to follow. (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

Approach and Uncertainty

The Athletes Village will be a state of the art facility that is focusing on providing a venue for competitors to stay in during the games. At the same time, this is an investment in Glasgow's future by turning the location into a place for social development and as a way to support the continuing needs of the community. This will create jobs and ensure that the project is something which will benefit everyone after the games are over. (Beaumont 2013) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

These changes will be implemented by using a different kind of focus during the construction and maintenance of the facility. There will be a total of 1,500 units, 33,000 cubic meters of amenities and 33 hectares of Brownfield regeneration once everything is finished. This will provide an environmentally friendly location which is capable of meeting the current and future needs of stakeholders. (Beaumont 2013) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

The basic strategy that will be used to reduce the carbon footprint is to concentrate on ways to reduce waste and negate any adverse impacts from the daily function of the facility on the environment. This will be achieved by having in place zero carbon homes. That is capable of not emitting any CO2 into the atmosphere from the lighting, heating, hot water usage and all other energy related needs. The idea is to create a location which can meet the current needs of the athletes. Then, have them converted into homes that will address the current and future needs of the residents of Glasgow. (Beaumont 2013) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

These objectives will be accomplished by emphasizing the use of environmentally applications and materials in the construction phase. During this process, there will be focus on a number of areas to reach key benchmarks. The most notable include: the use of utility trenches, renewable energy sources, effective resource management and recyclable / environmental friendly materials. These different areas will reduce the carbon footprint of the location and it will allow it to become an example for others to follow. (Beaumont 2013) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

The use of utility trenches is designed to reduce any kind of disruptions for power to Athletes Village by placing them in special underground concrete structures. This will make it easier to access and troubleshoot any kind of problems with the power lines. During the construction, special attention will paid to reducing any kind of problems associated with telecommunications and water lines. This will ensure that workers have safe and dry conditions for access to these facilities at all times. (Beaumont 2013) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

Renewable energy sources are concentrating on avenues to increase the ability of each location to meet its own needs. This will be accomplished by installing solar energy panels, wind power and biomass CHP. The solar panels will go on the roof. They are providing up to 3.22 GWH of energy. The wind power will supplement the needs of the facility by producing 550 KW. The biomass CHP will offer up to 25.78 GWH of energy. These sources will deliver to the complex a total of 17 thousand kilowatts of electricity. This will reduce its dependence on the local electricity grid and decrease the carbon footprint of the location. (Beaumont 2013) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

The utilization of recyclable and environmentally friendly materials is when there will be a focus on building water systems that will capture the rainwater, effectively use the waste water from the bathrooms / showers and a soak way system. These areas will help to create an atmosphere where no water is wasted and it is responsibly placing them back into the ecosystem. At the same time, recyclable materials will be used in the construction of the facility. This will concentrate on utilizing a thermal system that insulates and reduces any kind of CO2 emissions. The use of cement will emphasize maximizing space and those products which have an easy end life of destruction. These areas will reduce the carbon footprint and ensure that it is capable of meeting the current and future needs of stakeholders. (Beaumont 2013) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

During this project, the biggest source of uncertainty will be to continually manage the construction and operation of the Athletes Village. This will be accomplished by focusing on implementing the latest technology to improve sustainability and ensure that the CO2 emissions remain the same or decrease even more. These objectives require a continuing focus on analyzing and addressing new challenges early. After the games are over, is when this will become an important factor for ensuring the continuing viability of the location. In this case, uncertainty will take place once the games have finished. This is when there is the realistic possibility of it falling into a state of disrepair from a lack of funding and effective management. To avoid these challenges requires a commitment from stakeholders to contribute to its continuing innovation and updates long after the conclusion of the games. (Beaumont 2013) (Commonwealth Games Athletes Village 2009)

Specific Actions and a Cost Benefit Analysis

The focus on utilizing eco-friendly applications will decrease the costs of completing the Athletes Village. For instance, the use of solar panels, wind power and biomass technology will cost a total of £14.215 million up front. Annually these figures will be approximately £2.32 million. However, the total amounts of carbon will decrease by 14.319 tons of CO2 every single year. (Beaumont 2013) (Procurement Sustainability Policy 2013)

These programs will help to keep the facility's cost structure fixed over the course of many years. This is because there is a focus on conservation and utilizing technology which is not dependent on the prevailing market prices for energy. Moreover, the smart grid technology will decrease the total amounts of energy consumption by 25%. As a result, these improvements will help to pay off the expenses incurred with building the Athletes Village in 13 years. (Beaumont 2013) (Procurement Sustainability Policy 2013)

At the same time, there must be an active facilities management program. This is a concentrated effort to ensure that everyone is following the main objectives of the… [END OF PREVIEW]

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