Thomasin Crowley, Global Director of Asia Pacific at WiredScore, shares how the company is helping stakeholders manage their properties efficiently and mitigate obsolescence risk. Buildings of today must demonstrate their smart capabilities to remain relevant, and having a footprint in the Asia Pacific region is essential to their mission of making the world’s buildings smarter.
In order to remain relevant, properties must demonstrate their smart capabilities. To achieve this, WiredScore has established itself, since 2013, as a global digital connectivity rating scheme with its eponymous WiredScore certification and a smart building certification — SmartScore – that helps developers and asset managers define best practices when developing them.
Having the ambition to extend education and create awareness of digital connectivity, WiredScore set up its first regional headquarters in the Asia Pacific (APac) region in April 2022, choosing Singapore as its base of operations. Hong Kong followed shortly after. Reaching a total of 143 registered buildings mainly across Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong and Thailand, and awarding 167 certifications, WiredScore has had an extensive track record working with Australian partners such as Lendlease, CorVal Partners, Credit Suisse, LaSalle Investment Management and Frasers Property Australia.
The challenge of certifying buildings and mitigating obsolescence risk varies from project to project and can be done at different stages of development, be it completing new projects or existing buildings. An example of a great retrofitting case in Singapore is Keppel Bay Tower, which clinched a SmartScore Gold and a WiredScore Platinum in June last year.
Crowley notes that the biggest challenge any landlord or developer faces is obsolescence of existing assets. To reduce this risk, asset owners must first assess what they have today and create a baseline — this is what WiredScore’s SmartScore certifications can help with.
She stresses that having a top-down policy to develop more smart buildings in Singapore, coupled with a focus on leasing and branding, technical value, and building for the future, is an important factor as most corporate tenants and landlords need to report their sustainability efforts. Working with local experts is key to serve more parts of the Southeast Asian market.
To further illustrate, Singtel has announced a partnership with Lendlease to redevelop the Comcentre, originally completed in 1981, into a new asset with the latest smart and digital technologies targeted at various health, technology, and sustainability ratings, including BCA Green Mark Platinum (Zero Energy), Well Platinum, and WiredScore and SmartScore ratings.
The take-up rate for WiredScore’s certification schemes has surpassed its expectations, with many developers and asset owners showing enthusiasm in the commercial market in Singapore. According to Crowley, four more commercial buildings in Singapore will likely be registered with WiredScore certification and eight more certifications will be awarded by the end of 2021.
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Overall, the focus on digital connectivity, sustainability, and retrofitting of smart systems is key to ensure buildings can remain relevant and maintain their obsolescence risk.