Aims to share sustainability best practices with other countries and cultures
Fatima de la Cerna | Assistant Editor
During a conference on building future educational facilities that Informa Middle East staged in Dubai earlier this year, Dr Ayoub Kazim, the Managing Director of the Education Cluster of TECOM, announced that, as of March 2015, the Dubai International Academic City (DIAC) has enjoyed energy savings worth AED 8,924,004.
Dr Kazim described the savings as a result of TECOM’s commitment to designing and operating university campuses that are environmentally and economically sustainable.
DIAC, Dr Kazim noted, is the world’s largest free zone dedicated to higher education, with a total built area of 1.5 million square feet. He also mentioned that it is the location of 25 international branch campuses from over 10 countries and, as of the 2012-2013 academic year, had a student population nearing 25,000.
With green features, such as solar trackers and intelligent building automation systems, and green strategies, like instituting a ‘no smoking’ policy and utilising District Cooling, defining it as an institution, DIAC functions as “an education ecosystem” that sets the bar for green learning spaces, locally and globally, Dr Kazim said.
“We are always looking for best practices not just here but in other countries, as well,” he said. “We are open to the next practice, because as a free zone dedicated to higher education, we have researchers from all over the world, who are interested in coming to the UAE to study our green schools. It is our objective to provide awareness about sustainability initiatives and to share that culture with others.”