WATER SAVING EFFORTS AT THE POINT MALL
With the potential for Day Zero becoming more of a reality each day, the management team at The Point Mall is driving a comprehensive water-saving campaign throughout the centre, directed at our retail tenants, office tenants and the public.
As the largest shopping centre within Sea Point, The Point Mall fulfils an important role for the community and is a significant contributor to the local economy. It is our priority to ensure that these businesses can continue to operate throughout the water crisis in a responsible and sustainable manner.
In line with the Level 6 B water restrictions and City of Cape Town’s requirement to drastically reduce water consumption, The Point Mall has already introduced a number of water saving initiatives and are in an advanced stage of exploring other opportunities to further improve water efficiency in the long term.
The Point Mall is fully air-conditioned, and unfortunately, the system can use up to 1.2 million litres per month if it is left to run continuously. As of February 1st, we have limited the air conditioner operating times in the basement and retail floors to the centre’s busiest times; 08h00-18h00 during weekdays and 08h00-13h00 during weekends, which will result in a significant reduction of The Point Mall’s water consumption.
The public restrooms are another source of high water consumption. Although The Point Mall has embarked on a water-saving public awareness campaign with numerous information boards and signs displayed throughout the centre, it is impossible to effectively manage irresponsible water usage in the public restrooms.
After careful consideration, The Point Mall opted to close general public access to the restrooms on the first floor, providing access only to patrons who shop at The Point and tenants that do not have their own ablutions facilities, and their customers. Access will be granted on a discretionary basis to people with medical emergencies, pensioners and parents with small children. We do understand that this could be an inconvenience for the public and we request their understanding in this matter.
The water crisis is not limited to the next few months and it is safe to assume that Cape Town will face pressure on its water reserves for the foreseeable future. Looking forward, The Point Mall is exploring alternate methods to augment our supply independent of municipal water. During construction of the basement parking levels in The Point Mall, we discovered (at the time) a significant amount of water which we capture and manage with sump chambers while the overflow feeds into the stormwater drainage system.
We are in the process of designing complex infrastructure to reticulate this water and are busy engaging various experts to investigate the yield, quality and feasibility of using this water as an “off-the-grid” supply for the Point Mall’s purposes in the future.
Our primary objective is to ensure that the Point Mall can continue to trade and serve the community throughout the water crisis, and this will only be possible if we all continue to drastically reduce our water consumption. The possibility of Day Zero moves Cape Town into unchartered territory, and we implore that our tenants, the public, and the community, continue to work with us in a collective effort to save every possible drop.
Together we can #DEFEATDAYZERO