• Staff writer


Atterbury, a leading South African property developer and investor, has cut water consumption at eight of its landmark buildings by investing in water security, saving more than 100 million litres to date.

While it has always monitored and responsibly managed its water use, Atterbury recently embarked on an intensive drive to bring down its buildings’ water consumption through implementing sustainable water management systems. Its water saving projects include developments such as the Deloitte headquarters building at Waterfall City, Midrand, and Newtown Junction shopping centre in Johannesburg.

Atterbury appointed AQUAffection, a company specialising in water management to design, install and commission sustainable water management systems at the eight buildings in order to manage demand. As a result of these initiatives, Atterbury is now saving more than 250 000 litres daily, compared to historical usage. It has achieved this through a combination of improved efficiencies, optimisation and augmentation with a mix of rainwater, groundwater and borehole water. Atterbury now harvests rainwater from a vast 15 000 square metres of roof area.

South Africa has moved from being a water-stressed country to a water-scarce country and with this in mind, Atterbury embarked on its water saving journey by assessing how much water its buildings had used in the past. It then implemented monitoring and efficiency measures to lower the water demand effectively. Based on reduced demand, it also added alternative water sources to the municipal supply and designed backup systems.

Efficiency measures involve finding and fixing leaks, eliminating wastage from taps and toilets, and optimising irrigation systems. These measures are tracked and monitored with electronic monitoring devices.

The Deloitte head office building has an underground basement parking, with an influx of groundwater into basement sumps. In the past, this water would typically have been pumped out into the stormwater system to avoid flooding but was identified as a useful water source and is now filtered and used for irrigation, flushing toilets and other purposes. Groundwater is collected in the basement sumps and then pumped to a central raw water holding tank. Rainwater collected from a catchment area on the roof of the building is added to this.

Another success story is Newtown Junction shopping centre, where the centre’s daily water is now supplied from a groundwater sump. This is a reduction in daily demand of more than 60% and annual water savings of more than 40 million litres.


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