Law firm gets Jazzed up


By Tristan Wiggill, with supporting information supplied by Zenprop Property Holdings and PJ Carew Consulting

Jazzman Plumbing’s Leon Tobias tells Plumbing Africa about the project that it completed in the new Hogan Lovells building in Sandton, Johannesburg.

Cover ImageImage credit: Zenprop Property Holdings

Located at 140 West Street and developed by Zenprop Property Holdings, the structure comprises an iconic 27 000m2 office property in two linked towers. There is a 10-storey north tower and a 14-storey south tower.

While the south tower is numbered to 14, it actually comprises thirteen floors although there is no 13th floor. There are eight basement levels and the entrance to the international law firm’s building is within 325m of Sandton City.

Jazzman Plumbing was on the site in August 2015 and completed its work in October 2017, just weeks before tenants began to move in.

While a strike in the construction industry caused some late concern, Tobias says that everything was completed on schedule. “Practical completion was reached by the target date; that is, when the building was in a liveable state,” he says.

He explains that the Hogan Lovells building is ‘green’, although it is not a Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) rated building. However, the base build is Green Star-rated.

“All the materials used are green; that is, the HTPE, copper, and certain sections are constructed using galvanised steel.”


Tobias says that a big challenge during the project was time management. “We had a set 18 months to complete our work. Changes had to be made and, as plumbers, we had to wait for certain supplies. In this industry we are always chasing time.”

He adds that another stumbling block was site access. “The lifts were not working, for example. If we had easier access to the floors we could have saved time. Moving around the building was also challenging as we had to pass by pipes and manoeuvre through scaffolding.”

Products used by Jazzman included high-density polyethylene (HDPE), which were electro welded and heat fused. HDPE complies with green efficiencies and lasts longer as there are no joints.

Hot water is generated from heat pumps, which saves electricity. And all the pipework is lagged (cladded) to keep heat in and save electricity.

The only real challenges faced by the wet services engineers came from some of the drainage, which is done through a sump. There is a lifting station for this, while the other stuff is gravity fed. From a design perspective, it was a bit challenging tying up the services and getting everything coordinated.

A solenoid valve in the domestic water tank. 
Image credit: Tristan WiggillPressure gauges to the boiler. 
Image credit: Tristan WiggillThe domestic pump room showing the panels and the pumps. 
Image credit: Tristan WiggillWater meter station located in the basement. 
Image credit: Tristan Wiggill

The tenant added kitchens and various other facilities, which had to be coordinated after everything else had been done.


All plumbing fittings and fixtures were selected for their water-saving properties.

Handbasin taps and shower heads are ‘low flow’. Approximately 57% of the handbasin taps are operated with infrared sensors, which detect the movement of a user’s hands before dispensing just enough water for the user to wash their hands.

The toilets have a dual flush system, which allows users to use less water to flush the toilet when only a small amount of water is needed, and to use more water when needed. Users can select to flush the toilet with less water by pressing a smaller flush button or flush with more water using the larger button.

The water in the handbasins, showers, and kitchens are municipal potable water that is of a high quality and safe for human and/or domestic consumption. It can safely be used for drinking, hand washing, showering, and food preparation.

There are tanks in the building that store municipal water in case of a water outage. This means there will still be water in the building in the event of a disruption to municipal supply.


Hot water in the building is produced by five heat pumps. Heat recovery from the air-conditioning system is used to heat the water. Each heat pump supplies hot water at a constant temperature of 58°C. The coefficient of performance (COP) of the heat pumps is not less than 3.5. The heat pumps are controlled by a temperature sensor in the bottom of the storage tank, set to start the heat pumps when the temperature drops below 45°C.

Standard urinal flush mechanisms use in excess of 2ℓ per flush. Not only do you not have to touch the flush mechanism, but the low flush urinals use 1ℓ per flush, saving water and limiting the spread of germs.

The taps on the wash handbasins and sinks are fitted with flow inhibitors, which keep the water flowing at a slow but usable 5ℓ and 9ℓ per minute, respectively.

The Zenprop development is targeting potable water consumption of no more than 0.065m3/m2/yr. This is a 93% reduction on the Cape Town average. Water consumption will be monitored by water meters and through the building management system (BMS).

Information from the BMS is used for reporting to the building operations manager. The target is compared to the Cape Town and Australian averages and National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS*) best performance.

The pressure-reducing valve station in the duct. 
Image credit: Tristan WiggillA vertical sewerage stack. 
Image credit: Tristan Wiggill7.jpg


Only a small portion of the building’s water supply needs to be potable. Major water demands like irrigation and toilet and urinal flushing can be met with recycled grey water.

All major potable and recycled water consumption is metered and devices are connected to the monitoring system, allowing automatic data transfer from meters to monitor consumption profiles and to send a warning to the facilities manager if excessive consumption is detected.

Consumption from areas not metered, such as water features, can be deduced by adding or subtracting the values from meters on the same system.

While energy efficient, the design still prioritises the comfort, productivity, and health of the occupants.

The heating and cooling systems have been designed to provide comfortable conditions in the building throughout the year.

The systems are controlled by the BMS. The building is designed to be between 20°C and 24°C in both summer and winter. Plenty of fresh air is provided and the interior air is monitored by CO2 sensors.

Water consumption will be monitored by water meters and through the BMS.

One of the aims of the development is to reduce the amount of waste destined for landfill sites. Waste reduction will be monitored via receipts from the recycling waste contractor and general waste contractor, who have to confirm how much waste they are removing from the site. The building’s waste reduction target has been set at 50%.

By setting targets and measuring the building performance, they can better manage the facility and identify opportunities for improved savings.


The development is targeting a 45% reduction in energy consumption when compared to the energy consumption of a notional building. The notional building is conservative and meets the requirements defined by the SANS 204 guide for energy-efficient buildings. The energy usage is monitored by the energy submeters and automated BMS.

Dedicated fresh air units provide fresh air rates double that of normal buildings to keep you awake and healthy.

All open plan, cellular offices and meeting rooms are served by chilled water FCUs with electric heating.

Air-cooled chillers selected for high part-load performance serve the chilled and heating water system for cooling and heating the spaces.

Thermostats in the spaces tell the diffusers how much air is needed to cool the space down or heat it up in winter. There are about five people per control point, so you need to communicate to decide what temperature you want.

Ventilation fans extract air in toilets, kitchens, and other spaces to provide replacement air for good indoor air quality.

Basements are mechanically ventilated only when required and through carbon monoxide sensors.

*NABERS is a national rating system that measures the environmental performance of Australian buildings, tenancies, and homes. Put simply, NABERS measures the energy efficiency, water usage, waste management, and indoor environment quality of a building or tenancy and its impact on the environment.

It does this by using measured and verified performance information, such as utility bills, and converting them into an easy to understand star rating scale from one to six stars. For example, a 6-star rating demonstrates market-leading performance, while a 1-star rating means the building or tenancy has considerable scope for improvement.


 Taps and mixers  Hans Grohe
 Basins and urinals  Geberit
 Toilet cisterns and actuators  Geberit
 Urinal actuators and systems  Geberit
 Rainwater system  Valsir
 HDPE pipes  Valsir
 Pumps and boilers  WET (Water Engineering Technologies)
 Standard geysers  Kwikot
 Hydro taps  Franke
 Copper pipes  Copper Tube Africa

Click below to read the January 2018 issue of Plumbing Africa

PA JAN2018

AdmirorGallery 5.2.0, author/s Vasiljevski & Kekeljevic.