How a City’s Building Boom Affects the Environment


A significant increase in buildings and real estate developments means a “good business climate” for a country but for the environment, it could spell environmental damage. As residential and commercial towers shoot up in many cities around in the world, this development can take a toll on the environment in many different ways. While new towers and buildings are of crucial importance to a city’s urban development, its harmful effects on the environment should not be an afterthought.

A building boom may be seen as a sign of success for a country, but looking at the big picture, are we being blinded by immediate needs to the needs of keeping our spaces clean and fit to live in.

Limiting the environmental impact

The environmental damage caused by building constructions has the biggest impact in the local setting. In cities experiencing building booms, the roads and main streets are messier and noisier than usual. There are sounds of drilling and excavating everywhere, and you can hear shouting workers and noisy machinery everywhere you go.  Construction noise is a major contributor to noise pollution. Unfortunately, the only solution to this is keeping the project length as short as possible.

Aside from the noise, tons of material waste is produced from building construction. The demolition and renovation of buildings result in a large amount of waste including metals, glass, plastics, and asphalt. In order to limit these environmental impacts, there should be a proper way to manage demolition and rubbish removal. Demolition waste may be reused and recycled for future projects as well. The recycling of materials is one of the best ways to keep our landfills from ever growing and doing so also provides more economy for construction projects.

Fuel usage is also a big problem caused by building construction. Burning of fossil fuels, gas, and diesel and other waste products pollute the air and contribute to global warming. Using greener alternative sources of fuel can help decrease negative emission and minimise its contribution to air pollution.

The importance of building green

A developing city undergoing a building boom shouldn’t always be a threat to the environment. According to the Green Building Council of Australia, green building incorporates principles of sustainable development to meet the needs of the present without compromising the future of the environment. From the design, construction, and operational practices, green building reduces its negative impact on the environment.

According to the World Green Building Council, here are few features that make a building ‘green’:

green building

  • Uses renewable energy, water, and other resources efficiently
  • Takes pollution and waste reduction measures
  • Enables re-using and recycling
  • Uses are non-toxic, ethical and sustainable materials
  • Considers the environment in design, construction, and operation
  • Has a design that enables adaptation to a changing environment

A city’s building boom is a sign that you’re in a robust economy. Constructing skyscrapers and towers is a part of a city’s development. However, it could be done in a conscious and “greener” way if only construction firms took a stronger lead in green practises.