The GBCSA Annual Leadership Awards were announced at the 15th Green Building Convention held in November 2022.

Words GBCSA and Nicole Cameron




Accredited professional: Mike Munnik, Agama Energy

Given that The Ridge employs some of the most advanced sustainable building technology available globally, it is fitting that this world class living, breathing building enjoys a second year of holding the title of Highest-Rated Building. “The Ridge development was created as a result of the V&A Waterfront’s vision to set new standards for the future of commercial office buildings. This approach underpinned the brief to the project team to challenge the norms and create a world-leading building which placed people and planet at the forefront of every design decision.

“The resultant design incorporates several standout features, some of which are firsts for South Africa, including the CLT timber facades, mixed mode thermally activated building and the use of over 16 000 eco-bricks as void formers,” says Mark Noble, development director at the V&A Waterfront.

Project type: Commercial
Project owner: V&A Waterfront
Green Star rating: 6-Star Green Star Office As Built v1.1

The Ridge was designed to be a world-class living, breathing building by incorporating a number of standout features, some of which are firsts for South Africa

This is the northern corner of the building. Note how the function of the sawtooth CLT façade corrects the north-south line, meaning that the sun in the east strikes the CLT panel and can’t directly enter the building.

The highest-rated building is determined as the project which attains the highest number of points in the final Green Star rating in the period since last year’s Convention.

*The runner-up in this category opted to remain confidential.



*Black River Park – Park Building, Black River Park – Gatehouse, Commerce Square (Building 1), Commerce Square(Building 2), Commerce Square (Building 3), Commerce Square (Building 4), Commerce Square (Building 5)

Accredited professional: Sally Misplon, Misplon Green Building Consulting

Project type: Commercial
Project owner: Redefine Properties
Green Star rating: Existing Building Performance v1

Black River Park is a modern and diverse business park conveniently located in Observatory, Cape Town. Misplon was appointed to lead and manage the Green Star Certification process for Black River Park, South and Central, with each of the seven buildings targeting an independent Green Star performance rating.

“It is a great achievement to win the Best Quality Submission at the annual GBCSA awards. To be recognised amongst your industry peers for the standard of work you deliver to your clients really is a meaningful acknowledgement for Misplon Green Building Consulting. This award is an important collaboration between so many people that is helping pave the way for improved green ratings in the South African property sector; and a huge amount of credit must be given to Redefine and their ongoing support of sustainability,” says Sally Misplon, founder of Misplon Green Building Consulting.


*138 West Street, Brookfield Office Park, 100 West Street, Freestone Office Park and 28 Fricker Road

Accredited professional: Lesedi Tsimani, Zutari

These properties are all existing buildings of the Growthpoint portfolio, and form part of the ongoing effort to certify the majority of the buildings they own. “This award is a testament to the commitment of both Growthpoint and our team in transforming the South African real estate sector towards more environmentally responsible operations,” says Lesedi Tsimani, accredited professional at Zutari. “The existing buildings stock is the largest component of real estate in South Africa and efforts to reduce the use of finite resources and implement environmentally responsible practices are of great importance when the sector is aspiring to achieve net-zero carbon performance by 2050.”

Project type: Commercial
Project owner: Growthpoint Properties
Green Star rating: Existing Building Performance v1


Accredited professional: Alison Groves, WSP

Project type: Commercial
Project owner: Corporate Campus Joint Venture
Green Star Rating: 4-Star Green Star Office As Built v1.1

Waterfall Corporate Campus consists of seven buildings, all of which received a 4-Star Green Star rating from the GBCSA between 2018 and 2022. “This was the sixth building that the project team and I worked on through the certification process, and so there was a great sense of familiarity and a team cohesion; this certainly contributed to the high standard achieved in the submission,” says Alison Groves of WSP. “The holistic approach to the whole development is what really shone through for me on every level – from the way the buildings are positioned amidst the landscaped gardens, through to the unifying islands such as the central Maxwell Park Village campus café. This planned approach also meant that learnings from the first buildings could also be incorporated into subsequent builds, with project synergies enabling a slick outcome.”



Accredited professional: Nomamfengu Mbele, Solid Green Consulting

Mashatu Terrace is the first building in Botswana to be awarded a 5-Star Green Star rating. Project overseer Kagiso Sebetso of Time Projects said that the company is pioneering the green label space in the country, and so the process has not been without its challenges. “We are so aware of the importance of ensuring that it does not end with getting the certification, but that operational performance monitoring continues after construction. We look forward to working with the end-users to ensure optimisation of our green buildings throughout their lifecycle,” she says. Mashatu Terrace’s current occupants include SADC departments, Bank Gaborone, Huawei, Africa Lighthouse and TLS.

Project type: Commercial
Project owner: Time Projects
Green Star rating: 5-Star Green Star Office As Built v1


Accredited professional: Adrie Fourie, Solid Green Consulting

As the first development in Mauritius to achieve a 5-Star Green Star office design rating from GBCSA, as well as the highest-rated green office development in the Indian Ocean Islands region, The Precinct, Unity Building has achieved accolades which attest to the philosophy that all role-players on the project committed themselves to. Adrie Fourie of Solid Green Consulting says that together, the team – spread from Mauritius to South Africa – pulled out all the stops, with the building encompassing innumerable elements which contributed not only to the 5-Star Green Star rating but took it beyond. “The collaboration between the architect, façade engineer, and Solid Green modelling simulations consultant allowed for a building façade solution that resulted in multiple green star points.”

Project type: Commercial
Project owner: Gr1t House Ltd
Green Star rating: 5-Star Green Star Office Design v1.1

*The winner in this category has opted to remain confidential



Project type: Commercial
Project owner: Fuchs Southern Africa
Green Star rating: Net-Zero Carbon – Level 2 Occupant Emissions (modelled)

Accredited professional: Alex Varughese, Solid Green Consulting

The new headquarters for Fuchs Lubricants form part of the company’s net-zero carbon strategy, with the office being located within a campus that includes several of their production facilities. A key focus of the building was to ensure occupant comfort for at least 80% of the year using outdoor air only. To achieve this, considerable effort was put into optimising the building fabric and specifying a high-performance double glazing. A comprehensive metering system was installed. With the building fabric optimised, decoupled ventilation was designed into the cooling system to ensure that when outdoor conditions allow, the building can be cooled by fresh air only without having to open windows – effectively keeping the main cooling system off.


Accredited professionals: Alison Groves and Hlologelo Manthose, WSP

As a non-profit organisation, the South African National Blood Service (SANBS) provides a critical, often lifesaving, service to the public. WSP worked with the client to transform a shell industrial building into a sustainable, light space that now accommodates the head office, laboratory and a public-facing area.

The carbon footprint of the revitalised headquarters was greatly reduced by replacing the HVAC system, installing energy-efficient LED lighting throughout, capturing rainwater for re-use, reusing materials and installing a large solar array in the parking area. As part of the refurbishment, the goal of raising SANBS awareness and public interest was achieved by including an auditorium and upper level from which visitors can see into the laboratory, to engender greater interest in the SANBS’ work.

Project type: Non-profit sector
Project owner: South African National Blood Service
Green Star rating: Net-Zero Carbon Level 1 Base Building Emissions (modelled) As-Built