Focus Group Discussion on 'Assessing opportunities and promoting action towards greening the construction sector in Goa'
A Focus Group Discussion (FGD) for the outreach of the project 'Directions, Innovation and Strategies for Sustainable Development (DISHA) in Goa' was organized on 25 March 2013 at the International Centre, Panjim. This FGD was held to share the insights from the afore-mentioned study with stakeholders from the construction and building sector. The discussion was attended by 36 participants representing allied government departments, architects, developers, contractors, engineers and academicians. The overall focus of the discussion was to assess opportunities and promote action towards greening the construction sector in Goa.
The findings and recommendations from the DISHA study for the construction sector were presented by Dr Hina Zia from TERI. For successful implementation of the study recommendations, the role of Green Rating for Integrated Habitat Assessment (GRIHA) was explained by Ms Priyanka Kochhar from ADaRSH. A case study of a hotel project in Baga, where site-specific green measures were implemented at no additional cost was showcased by Ms Priya Vakil.
A panel discussion on identifying institutional mechanisms to encourage compliance and action was also conducted as a part of this FGD. It witnessed presence of eminent speakers such as Mr Puttaraju, Chief Town Planner, Govt of Goa; reputed architect Mr Dean D Cruz, Dr A K Rege, Principal of Goa College of Architecture, and a GRIHA certified evaluator from Goa, Mr Alinto Coelho.
All the stakeholders were in agreement that sustainable habitat is the need of the hour. It was found that more awareness and capacity building programs not only for the architects and engineers but also for the occupants and end-users are needed in the region. Inclusion of GRIHA in the syllabus for architecture, civil, mechanical and electrical engineering students was also suggested. A need for specific research studies for assessing the carrying capacity of the state and calculating the actual demand from the housing sector was expressed. The event was co-ordinated by Ms Ashwini Pai Panandiker from TERI who also proposed the vote of thanks.