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Pick n Pay On Nicol


A flagship store for Pick n Pay Retailers (Pty) Ltd and constructed in 2010 just as the awareness of sustainability within the built environment was growing, initiatives to target were informed by capital cost, payback, operational costs and public benefit considerations. The aim was to design a shopping environment which was different from the norm and which brought Pick n Pay’s vision to life with many of the initiatives being a first for Pick n Pay.

Artificial light brought into the building was reduced by using insulated roof lights and an expanse of performance glazing to the facades. This functions in conjunction with an energy efficient lighting system which was automatically controlled by way of a dimming system. This resulted in maximising the amount of natural light and rendered the premises self- sufficient requiring minimal artificial light in the general trading areas. LED lighting was selected to minimise the overall energy requirement. In addition further energy savings were in the form of a 100 KW Photo Voltaic installation. Over and above the standard roof insulation, a by-product of timber filings blended with Portland cement was installed throughout serving as both additional insulation and adding to the aesthetic finish.

All rainwater from the roofscape is captured and reticulated into holding tanks. This water is recirculated and used to irrigate the predominantly indigenous surrounding landscaping. It is also used, to a lesser extent, to subsidise the chilled water for the air conditioning plant. “Two retention dams were constructed to retain rain water from the surface area and gradually feed it into the Braamfontein Spruit.

In it’s day Pick n Pay On Nicol was the third store to use only natural refrigerants, and was the first real ammonia refrigeration plant of its size in the country. “Carbon dioxide and ammonia were obvious green alternatives as both have an ozone depleting potential of zero and virtually no global warming potential.” A combined refrigeration and air conditioning system produced ice at night, when electrical tariffs are low, and the ice was used to cool the building during the day. A heat reclaim system was implemented to heat the general water for the premises. The hot water came from a central 1600-litre tank, which relied on excess heat from the air conditioning system compressors that would have otherwise been wasted and lost.

Other sustainable initiatives implemented were waterless urinals, low VOC paints, Xanita board signage, HDPE in lieu of PVC, xeriscaping and the regeneration of the banks of the spruit which included a cycle track.

PROJECT NAME New Flagship Supermarket and Retail Centre for Pick n Pay
LOCATION Johannesburg, South Africa
SERVICES Architecture
SIZE 8496 m²