Building at its Best—Sumitomo Corporation's Environment-Friendly Building Business
Taking advantage of Sumitomo's integrated corporate strengths
Initially established as a construction and real estate company, Sumitomo Corporation has expanded throughout the industry and urban development and property management now forms a key part of its operations within this sector.
We own and manage high-quality real estate for lease (about 100,000 tsubo or 330,600 square meters in total), primarily in metropolitan areas in Tokyo and Osaka, as well as in Nagoya, Fukuoka, Sapporo and overseas (Indonesia, United States, etc). We operate this business by taking advantage of Sumitomo's integrated corporate strengths. While the Building Business Dept. of Sumitomo Corporation takes charge of planning, development and construction of buildings, the Sumitomo Group companies, namely, Sumisho Building Management Co., Ltd., S.C. Building Service Co., Ltd., and REIBI Co., Ltd. undertake operations and tenant leasing and local affiliates conduct maintenance and facility management.
Unlike ordinary developers, Sumitomo Corporation has developed a strong network of supplies for materials required for construction, such as iron, cement, mechanical equipment, and interior materials. Collaboration with our internal suppliers has resulted in new proposals and creative ideas.
Roof-top garden in the heart of Tokyo
People spend long hours in office buildings—and the more comfortable the space is, the higher people's work efficiency becomes. Incorporating new ideas to balance comfort and energy savings, we completed the construction of the Sumitomo Corporation Yaesu Building (Chuo-ku, Tokyo) in January 2011.
The rooftop of the 10-story building features a lush green garden, where people can have a break or lunch amid beautiful plants that change with each season. The roof-top garden also helps attract the cool sea breeze, providing a refreshing place for people to go in summer. Additionally, the garden is equipped with a simple water supply facility to accommodate small garden parties, which may allow you to forget, for a moment, that you are at the heart of Tokyo. Furthermore, a soft rubber tip material used for the ground of the garden reduces the burden on tired feet.
The roof-top garden has also been employed in two other Sumitomo Corporation buildings, specifically the Nishiki-cho Building (completed in October 2011) and the Jinbo-cho Building (completed in November 2011). The greenery feature is also planned for Sumitomo Corporation’s Kyobashi Building that is scheduled to be completed in May 2013. This eco-friendly structure will be included as a standard specification in all our future building development projects.
The office space features a desiccant air-conditioning system made by Daikin Industries Ltd. While conventional air-conditioning systems adjust the temperature only, this system dehumidifies in summer and humidifies in winter. The desiccant system is an extension of Daikin's popular home air conditioner, "Ururu Sarara," for commercial buildings, and the Yaesu Building is the first leasing building to use the system. As the system improves comfort and energy efficiency, Sumitomo Corporation will incorporate the system into the development of future buildings as well, together with featuring roof-top gardens.
The roof-top garden of the Yaesu Building
The roof-top garden of the Nishiki-cho Building
The roof-top garden of the Jinbo-cho Building
The world's eye on the Triton Model
Making office buildings environment-friendly is an important issue, but if the concept is taken too far, it risk making people feel suffocated. Human-centered thinking to create space where people can spend time comfortably, rather than focus on numerical targets, such as "reducing CO2 by XX% year on year," is essential. Sumitomo Corporation has nurtured that way of thinking through its initiatives at Harumi Triton Square that opened in 2001.
Conventional thinking might have left the square of the building complex as a cold, inorganic space, but we accented it by planting abundant greenery to contribute to reducing the heat island effect. We also made efforts to develop facilities from the perspectives of those who work or live in the complex, for example, ensuring that people on the lower floors cannot see the high-rise office tower. Additionally, for the effective use of the air conditioning heat source, we installed the core facilities for the Harumi Triton Square complex on the B3 and B4 floors, where it produces chilled water for air conditioning and supplies it to each building. We also adopted an energy-saving system that sends heat from a large underground thermal storage tank to the respective buildings, where local air conditioners carefully control the degree of heat to reduce unevenness in air conditioning. This "Triton Model" has won high praise domestically and overseas and the complex has attracted a host of visitors from around the world.
Cool and warm water run through a network of underground pipes to reach every corner of the building complex.
We have also proactively adopted systems for recirculation of rainwater and discharged water and recycling of waste. Based on the understanding that maintenance is key for large-scale facilities built for any redevelopment project, Harumi Corporation, a centralized management company approved by the management associations of the buildings of the Harumi Triton Square, performs environmental management across the entire complex. That is, environmental protection of the complex is left to a professional. These pioneering initiatives have won praise around the world.
People can enjoy flowers all year round at Triton Square's beautiful flower terrace. Consideration for co-existence with neighbors and local organizations will be increasingly required when constructing buildings in the future.
Launching a new large-scale development project
Sumitomo Corporation is participating in a large-scale redevelopment project in the Kanda area in Tokyo's Chiyoda-ku. This is an enormous project to develop a "green network" from the Imperial Palace to Kanda via Takebashi Bridge, and finally to Ueno Park. In this redevelopment project, we will take advantage of the environmental expertise and technologies we have acquired at Harumi Triton Square, thereby contributing to high quality and high value urban development .
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