ComBank wins Green Building – Platinum award for restored Galle Fort branch building | Daily News

ComBank wins Green Building – Platinum award for restored Galle Fort branch building

Commercial Bank’s Assistant General Manager Services Chinthaka Dharmasena (second from right) receives the award from GBCSL Chairman Prof. Ranjith Dissanayake in the presence of the Bank’s Chief Manager – Premises Department Tilak Wakista (extreme left) and Engineer – Premises Department Ravindra Kumara.
Commercial Bank’s Assistant General Manager Services Chinthaka Dharmasena (second from right) receives the award from GBCSL Chairman Prof. Ranjith Dissanayake in the presence of the Bank’s Chief Manager – Premises Department Tilak Wakista (extreme left) a

The heritage building which is home to the Galle Fort branch of the Commercial Bank of Ceylon has won a Platinum award from the Green Building Council of Sri Lanka (GBCSL) for its eco-friendly features after it was recently restored to its original grandeur by the Bank.

The Platinum award is the highest rating achievable based on a set of performance standards used to certify the operations and maintenance of a building.

The Commercial Bank of Ceylon ticked all the boxes when it undertook the renovation of this building, built in the early 19th century, which came into the Bank’s possession in 1973 when the Bank acquired three branches of the Mercantile Bank of India (MBI).

The building consists of the Commercial Bank’s Galle Fort Bank branch, the Bank’s Regional Office and a holiday home. It also houses a mini museum containing archives and items used since the inception of the branch, which has now become a popular tourist attraction.

The Platinum Rating was accorded to the building for the restoration process that included the recycling of all imperishable material in an environmentally friendly manner, using only locally sourced, specified Green rated raw material in the renovation, disposal of debris in compliance with the Department of Archeology and the Galle Heritage Foundation, installing a 15kW rooftop solar energy generation system, installation of a rain water harvesting system and ecofriendly food recyclers for all meal rooms, and the fitting of a fire protection system, back-up generator, energy efficient Variable Flow Refrigerant (VFR) air conditioning system, and an LED lighting and electrical system to complement the state-of-the-art banking operations of the branch.

The building has achieved 45% energy saving compared to the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) standard baseline and consumes minimal portable water with the use of a tube well and a pump powered by solar energy, the harvesting of rainwater, and the installation of efficient sanitary fittings.

The building’s refurbishment was carried out in consultation with the Galle Heritage Foundation, the Department of Archeology, the Galle Municipal Council and the Urban Development Authority, preserving the old structure wherever possible.

Commercial Bank Assistant General Manager – Services Chinthaka Dharmasena said: “Sustainability is one of the key pillars of the Bank’s corporate agenda, while the preservation of heritage sites and traditions is one of the causes we support through our CSR Trust. Both these aspects were addressed in the renovation of our Galle Fort branch as one of the initiatives to celebrate our centenary year in 2020.”

Commercial Bank was also presented the ‘Excellent Green Commitment Award’ for the Banking Sector in 2019 by the GBCSL for its leadership in multifaceted Green initiatives encompassing lending to support eco-friendly operations.