According to Christian Vasquez, a business development executive at the Dubai-based architecture and design company NEB, WELL-certified buildings are becoming a part of the future in the UAE.
“In South East Asia, China and the Philippines, they’re much more concerned with WELL than LEED. In Dubai, there’s only one WELL-certified building that I know of,” he says.
“But, there’s an awareness going on, on that level. It boils down to the wellness of a person, their comfort, and their mood. So when I went to China and Singapore and Manila, the demand for the WELL certification is very high. Here it seems architects are more concentrated on LEED and BIM.”
The WELL program is a New York-based initiative that rewards projects across the world that consider enhanced user experience. The initiative measures elements like the use of toxins in build and design materials, the use of water and the cleanness of the air, among many others.
“There’s now one WELL building in Dubai that I know of,” Vasquez says, “and I’ve had two more clients inquire about it. So I think the conversation is changing, and I think in the next few years, we’re going to see more of that.”
A complete Q+A with Vasquez will be published in Middle East Architect‘s upcoming July issue, as part of its ‘Dubai: The Next Decade’ series. Other contributing voices include Phillip Jones from B+H Architects and Joe Tabet from JT+Partners.
DesignMENA recently questioned whether or not the region is ready for WELL. Read more about it here.