STEPS TO LOTUS CERTIFICATION
Step 1: Initiate the project
Initiate the green process as early as possible by establishing a multidisciplinary project team, defining main environmental goals, getting to know more on LOTUS (by navigating through VGBC website, attending some training courses, etc.), beginning research and analysis of green solutions, etc.
Also, it is advised to engage green building consultants at this early stage as this is the best time to ensure that the environmental goals of the project will be cost-effectively met.
Reference: List of experienced green consultants in Vietnam
Step 2: Select suitable LOTUS rating system
Currently, VGBC has developed 6 LOTUS rating systems for 6 groups of buildings:
- LOTUS NC: for new construction or major renovation projects with Gross Floor Area (GFA) from 2500 m2 and above (LOTUS NC v3 is applicable for both residential and non-residential projects)
- LOTUS BIO: for all types of buildings in operation
- LOTUS Homes: for new construction of single-dwelling homes
- LOTUS SB: for new construction of small non-housing projects (GFA less than 2500 m2)
- LOTUS Interiors: for interior fit-out projects
- LOTUS Small Interiors: for small interior fit-out projects (GFA less than 1000 m2 and/or projects with limited scope of activities)
Step 3: Register your project with VGBC
The Project Representative (“the Applicant”) should contact and notify VGBC of the intention to pursue LOTUS Certification. Then, VGBC will send the Project Registration Form (which is downloadable from VGBC website) and prepare LOTUS Assessment Agreement.
Reference: Registration and assessment fees for LOTUS Certification
Upon successful registration, the project will:
- be assigned a PIN (Project Identification Number)
- get listed on LOTUS Project Directory on VGBC website
- get access to a complete package of documentation for LOTUS certification process, including a Submission Folder and a Resources Folder (with supporting tools, calculators, guidelines and templates)
- be assigned a LOTUS Representative to help with clarification and interpretation of LOTUS credits
Step 4: Define strategies to meet LOTUS requirements
Perform a feasibility study and an Eco-Charrette (interactive team-building exercise) to identify the LOTUS credits to target and the green strategies to implement based on the environmental goals, budget, project configuration, owner requirements, etc.
For projects under LOTUS NC, BIO or Interiors, make sure that requirements of all the LOTUS Prerequisites (that are mandatory requirements) will be met. Else, the project can fail Certification.
Step 5: Go through Provisional Assessment stage
Provisional assessment happens when all the strategies to meet LOTUS requirements are ready to be implemented (i.e. at the end of the design or tender stage for new construction projects and before the renovation of the building and the modification of operations for buildings in operation).
The Applicant should submit a complete portfolio of evidence (drawings, specifications, manufacturer’s data, etc.) demonstrating that the project is on-track to meet LOTUS requirements.
Provisional assessment stage is optional but strongly encouraged.
For projects under LOTUS NC, BIO and Interiors, Provisional Certification may be awarded if results are satisfactory.
For other systems, no Certification is available at this stage and the provisional assessment is called “Pre-assessment stage”, aiming to verify that the project is on a right track to get certified and to provide guidance on how to achieve the performance targeted.
Step 6: Implement the green strategies
Ensure that LOTUS requirements are followed during the implementation phase (i.e. construction and commissioning for new construction projects, or renovation and operations for buildings in operation): the green strategies should be correctly implemented, the right equipment, products, materials should be installed, etc.
Also, during the implementation stage, it should be ensured that all pieces of evidence and documents necessary to demonstrate compliance with requirements are prepared and collected.
Step 7: Final Assessment
Final assessment happens either:
- after construction and commissioning for new construction projects, or
- at the end of the Performance period (i.e. one year of operation after renovation) for buildings in operation.
The Applicant should submit a complete portfolio of evidence (as-built drawings, receipts, invoices, photographs, etc.) demonstrating that the project has met LOTUS requirements.
Submissions will be assessed by the PAC, and Final Certification will be awarded if results are satisfactory.