MIPIM September Edition 2021 | impressions

Mehmet Kalyoncu, Faisal Butt, Vincent Aurez

Leaving a better world to our children shouldn’t be only a wish but should be action of items. We have less time. In my opinion we should focus on the areas where we can increase a better impact which are big buildings such as airports, big infrastructures… When we built the Istanbul airport, we focused on that. This is only possible with advanced technological infrastructure. 

All of them are available in this airport. To create an impact, we should also focus on growing sectors. Because growing sectors come with social and economic benefit but with also environmental impact. Aviation sector is the biggest growing mode of transportation among others. It was really important for us how can we decrease the environmental impact of Istanbul airport. How we did this? By making smart decisions. Firstly, on design and masterplan. New airport is next to the sea. When airplanes come, they leave their carbon to the sea. Eventually, after the new airport the air quality of Istanbul got better with only the decision of location of the airport. These small decisions create big impact. In the construction period we were careful also. When we designed it, it was important for us that all the applications work smoothly. We measured everything with data and this data allowed us to see where there is an anomaly. When we see it, of course we then get into action and we make our systems efficient again. These algorithms run on the Big Data platform is enabling us to make predictive maintenance. This is being used on elevators, escalators…

We are also using bio jet on airplanes which is a radical for aviation industry and electrical hydrant dispensers. We will start deploying solar panels at the airport because the electricity consumed by the airport is almost equivalent to some cities in Turkey. Now, we want to open the airport to academics and entrepreneurs to implement their ideas, their prototypes on our ecosystem and being able to create an open innovation platform.


I think there is a direct relationship between digital innovation and sustainability. We firmly believe that you can’t manage what you can’t measure. In order to be able to measure the sustainability impact of your building, of your project you need to have implement some sophisticated digital technologies. Some examples I can give you, in the UK, we have invested a start-up. They help real estate owners to measure the environmental impact of energy usage of their buildings by plugging into to building management systems, by plugging into the IoT sensors and the various other systems in their building. They are also using AI to be able to bring the light insights as to how your building being managed and how efficient is. Those insights lead into actionable recommendations that the building owner can make to reduce their carbon impact and reduce their energy usage. We hope that companies like this can scale up and grow beyond and just a couple of real estate portfolios and I think that’s going to be one of the interesting challenges to watch. Because the clock is ticking. With every day that goes by we need accelerate the action that we are taking. You can’t do that without deploying these types of technologies at scale. We have also invested in another start-up which is called Qflow. They are specifically measuring the materials that come on to development and construction site and the waste that goes off to construction site. Through AI and data collection at all the different points of materials are going in and waste going out they are able to help construction projects reduce their environmental risks.

Faisal BUTT
Founder & CEO, PI LABS

We are specialized in housing projects and offices with zero land urbanization. We do not urbanize new lands such as agricultural areas. This is a strong conviction and needs a lot of innovation. Because how do you identify these lands? This is our main challenge. First, we are gathering databases and developing new thinking, new models about that to identify those lands other investors don’t identify. There are empty buildings for several years 10 kms away from Paris. Why? because you don’t have investors like us. We can buy these buildings without any condition then we can transform this building from office to housing for example. Secondly, our asset management team makes a dedicated budget to transform the building in the short term, medium term and long term. Thanks to this budget we can work with all the great companies that you will have invested in and we will be able to invest in them in a five years time.

Vincent AUREZ
Director Innovation, Sustainable Development and Communication, NOVAXIA

media partner of MIPIM 2021