KOTA KINABALU: The RM15 million Sabah Art Gallery conservation centre has been targeted to be the first government building with the Green Building Index (GBI) in Sabah.
The new centre, located at Mile 2, Penampang Road, is currently 75 per cent completed, with full completion expected by March 31 next year.
Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun said the consultants had made changes to the original design to fulfill the criteria of the GBI.
These include the system to power the air-conditioners, rainwater harvesting for the washrooms, sensor lightings as well as the use of energy saving LEDs.
Masidi said government buildings are often haunted by high maintenance costs for power, adding, “this building takes into account environment factors such as maximising the use of sunlight, solar energy for the lights and this can save money for electricity for the government.”
Masidi, together with his assistant ministers Datuk Bolkiah Ismail and Datuk Ellron Alfred Angin, inspected the site here yesterday.
The building consists of four levels. The first level is the working area for staff, the storage area and entrance at the second level, the third level housing the art gallery and library and the top level to house another art gallery, meeting rooms and office space.
Masidi further said construction was three months behind schedule due to inclement weather.
There were a total of 150 rainy days this year, meaning that work could only be carried out for five months during the year, he said.
The structural framework of the building has been completed, with the architecture 50 per cent completed and infrastructure around 20 per cent done.
Masidi further said the design of the building was inspired by local culture, as the structure of the building depicts the traditional Kadazan Dusun carrier basket, known as the ‘wakid’.
He said the centre was not only beautiful but also unique for it reflects the culture and lifestyle of Sabahans.
“This building is to be used for the next 100 years and at the same time to exhibit our rich culture.”
Masidi commended the contractors and consultants for their work and said it was a big achievement to reach 75 per cent completion stage despite the vagaries of the weather.
The mechanical and electrical consultant, Richard Tsen, said the operational cost would be lower for the building, even though transforming the centre into a green building would incur an additional five to 10 per cent in cost.
Also present were Sabah Cultural Board chairman Datuk Seri Panglima Wences Anggang and Shah Architect associate partner Lee Hong Liong.