Twice for Gold: Dar’s Smart Village Headquarters Wins Second LEED Gold Certification

Twice for Gold: Dar’s Smart Village Headquarters Wins Second LEED Gold Certification


Location Africa



An emblem of the company’s commitment to sustainability, Dar’s flagship six-storey headquarters in Cairo’s Smart Village has recently been awarded the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification for Operation and Maintenance from the U.S. Green Building Council. This achievement marks a significant milestone in Dar’s commitment to creating a more sustainable future.

In a letter announcing the certification, the President and CEO of the U.S. Green Building Council and Green Business Certification Inc. Peter Templeton stated, “LEED certification identifies Dar Al-Handasah Offices at the Smart Village as a showcase example of sustainability and demonstrates your leadership in transforming the building industry.”

Commenting on this award, Dar’s Director of Project Management and Contracts Andre Samaha said, “Achieving the Gold standard in sustainable operation and maintenance for the headquarters not only demonstrates Dar’s commitment to sustainability and to the comfort of our people, it also marks an important milestone for our company in the operation and maintenance sector. The extensive expertise we have gained in achieving such a high-profile award will empower our teams to provide similar services and exceptional value to our clients on their own buildings and assets.”

The LEED sustainability certification system is the world’s most widely used green building rating system. By providing stringent and comprehensive standards for sustainable design, construction and operations, LEED recognises new and existing buildings that reduce carbon emissions, energy, and waste; conserve water; prioritise safer materials; and use healthier and more environmentally friendly building materials. The LEED certification for Operations and Maintenance especially focuses on existing buildings, emphasising operational efficiency, resource conservation, and tenants’ well-being. 

Designed for sustainability

Renowned as the first LEED Gold certified building in Egypt, Dar’s Smart Village headquarters has long been recognised for its outstanding sustainable design. Incorporating sustainability in almost every feature, the headquarters includes a vertical shading system, atrium design with automatic controls, enhanced electronic air filtration systems, an executive area that meets the Zero Carbon standard, and numerous other passive and active sustainability features. This architectural innovation not only enhances the employees’ comfort and wellbeing but also significantly reduces the building’s energy consumption.  

Collaborating for a sustainable future

However, delivering a sustainably designed LEED Gold headquarters was only the beginning of the challenge. Global estimates predict that over 80% of a building’s carbon emissions will occur during the operation and maintenance phase of that building’s lifecycle. Therefore, for its headquarters, Dar assembled a team of experts including sustainability specialists, mechanical engineers, facility management and project management experts, and specialists in digital solutions to support the building administration team in identifying inefficiencies, designing remedial sustainability measures, and implementing those measures to continuously optimise the building’s performance.

One of the key innovations used in this effort was Para – a digital twin and building analytics platform, designed in-house by Dar’s Digital Solutions and Services Department. Para leverages building data to optimise and facilitate operation and maintenance, to make the building more energy-efficient, cost-effective, and sustainable. The Para solution identified facility management interventions that would boost operational efficiency and provided decision making support on energy management, sustainability, asset management, and user comfort.

These measures enabled Dar to achieve Gold certification under the LEED v4.1 Operations and Maintenance: Existing Buildings rating system.

Empowering sustainable communities

These efforts align with Dar’s commitment to decarbonising the built environment – beginning with our own. In 2021, Dar proudly signed the World Green Building Council’s Net Zero Carbon Buildings Commitment, demonstrating proactive climate leadership.  The new LEED Gold certificate demonstrates that Dar intends to lead by example, decarbonising our own operations around the world, while empowering our clients around the world to take action towards decarbonising the built environment.