Leeds Sustainability Institute

Open Knowledge Exchange and Sharing

Author: fairsnape (page 1 of 7)

BDE Podcast on Passivhaus with Elrond Burrell & Chris Herring

We are delighted to be able to share with you the podcast of a unique interview conducted by Mark Wilson from Building Design Expert at our recent Constructing Excellence YH Passivhaus breakfast seminar with Elrond Burrell from Architype Architects and Chris Herring from Green Building Store . This interview explored the entire design & build process of Passivhaus with some interesting insights from our two event speakers.

BDEPodcast

Architype Architects are based in Hereford and have a passion for sustainable architecture. Hand in glover with sustainable building design is the need to reduce energy use. Architype have achieved this by adopting the Passivhaus design and building standard; with a growing reputation for use of the standard on a commercial scale with offices and school buildings, in addition to large scale and one off housing projects.

The Green Building Store represents Passivhaus design development from the contracting side of the industry, and their reputation has grown around not only their on site attention to detail with their ability to successfully implement the Passivhaus standard, but their sourcing of products and technology that will meet the rigorous performance requirements that the standard demands.

Living Building Challenge UK

LBC_logo_clear_no2The UK Living Building Challenge Collaborative met this week at Squire Patton Boggs in Leeds and saw construction professionals, architects, landscape architects, software vendors, sustainability experts and representatives from Leeds Beckett University discuss Standard V3 and the future of the UK Collaboratives.

Martin Brown gave an inspiring introduction to version 3.0, launched earlier in the year, covering the standards principles, petals and key imperatives. This was followed with a great discussion on the Living Building Challenge and relevance in the UK sector.

Martin emphasised that the Challenge is ‘A visionary path to a regenerative future’. Whereas other standards are focused on doing ‘less bad,’ the Living Building Challenge is based on the philosophy of doing more good, that is, restorative sustainability. We should no longer be satisfied with creating buildings that have negative impacts however small they may be, but look to create buildings, structures, and communities that contribute back to the environment and nature.

The Living Building Challenge uses a less technical, but more powerful, softer language than most standards, and puts topics such as beauty, education and biophilic design back into the equation.

Many present commented that a welcomed aspect was the inclusion of ‘health, happiness, beauty, nature’ within the standard.

Indeed the standard uses a metaphor of a flower, with seven petals, each of which comprises of several imperatives, 20 in total. All of these must be met in order to obtain full certification and the status of a Living Building.  We heard there are currently 201 registered projects worldwide.

2015 Plans

We are currently the only collaborative in the UK, however, we will be sharing this status with London due to launch in the spring and interest is growing elsewhere across the country.

During 2015 we will explore each of the Petals individually through workshops which will be held on the second Wednesday of each month, before the Green Vision evening and half day sessions. The timetable will be:

January 14th – Place

February 11th – Water

March 11th – Energy

April 15th – Health and Happiness

May 13th – Materials

June 10th – Equity

July 8th – Beauty

To drive these workshops, we are looking for ‘champions’ to head each ‘petal’. If you feel that you are an expert on any of the standard areas, or passionate about specific imperatives, or just want to get involved please send us an email at CKEEvents@leedsbeckett.ac.uk

We will also deepen the relationship with projects interested in registering and pursuing certification. And the exciting news here is that we have one potential project ready to register and other in development. Other activities will include design competitions, project charrette support, and a UK overlay to the International Standard with terminology, regulations and standards appropriate to the UK sector.

We are also compiling a library of UK building case studies that illustrate Living Building Challenge concepts. If you are aware of any projects, your own perhaps that addresses any of the standard imperatives or philosophies please do let us know for inclusion into our library.

We look forward to you joining our Collaboratives and getting involved, with your projects perhaps, in this exciting new era for built environment sustainability.

As Martin has said many times, ‘it’s time to heal the future’…

Great healthy buildings & workplace productivity discussion at last night’s #gvis2014

GreenVision & thinkBIM Presents – GREENBIM Conference on the 3rd December 2014

This Conference pairs two revolutionary movements of Green Building and BIM to create environmentally friendly design through streamlined process.

Join thinkBIM & GreenVision at WSP Leeds on 3rd December 14. The day will include a range of Construction professional speakers and roundtables!

For more details and to book your place Click Here

UK-GBC City Conference: Apply to attend

DONT MISS THE CHANCE TO APPLY TO BE PART OF THE UKGBC INAUGURAL CITY CONFERENCE –  closing date Friday 7th November !!

As members of the UKGBC we are supporting and helping to promote the forthcoming Inaugural City Conference  in Manchester which will be of interest to you if you want to be part of an exclusive group, with the opportunity to shape a greener, more sustainable Manchester

The UK Green Building Council’s inaugural City Conference will, over two days, bring together 100 built environment business leaders, experts and officials from Manchester and the rest of the UK, to find solutions to future challenges and input into development opportunities for the city.

Date:      Wednesday 21 – Thursday 22 January 2015
Time:     10am start on Day 1, and a 4pm finish on Day 2
Venue:   Museum of Science and Industry, Liverpool Rd, Manchester M3 4FP
Fee:       UK-GBC Member – £300 (+VAT), Non-member – £1000 (+VAT)

Click here to download the full conference overview.
Why should you attend?
Opportunity:

Working in partnership with the City Council, the conference has been timed to coincide with consultation on Manchester’s 10-year city strategy, offering delegates the chance to influence this long-term plan – and beyond. Delegates are then challenged to inspire and inform upcoming local developments, translating the long-term vision into real projects on the ground.

Programme: An engaging and innovative two-day programme featuring collaborative workshops, visits to development sites, great speakers (including Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council) and an exclusive networking dinner at Manchester Art Gallery (with Sir Howard Bernstein, Chief Executive of Manchester City Council).

Delegates: The exclusive group of 100 delegates is being compiled by application only, to ensure a comprehensive mix of sectors and different areas of expertise. Attendees will include investors, developers, architects, engineers, contractors, manufacturers and third sector organisations. It is deliberately designed for both those with an in-depth knowledge of Manchester and those completely new to the city.

Programme includes:
• The ‘big picture’ – Manchester in a global context of mega-trends and drivers
• Introduction to the city – past and present successes and challenges
• Council Leader’s keynote and panel discussion
• Sustainable place-making: case studies from around the world
• Collaborative workshop: creating a sustainable vision for Manchester
• Networking dinner with keynote from Council Chief Executive Sir Howard Bernstein
• City tour – viewing current and future development sites
• Collaborative workshop: Implementing the vision “on the ground”

 

Applications
The conference is aimed at everyone across UK-GBC’s network, including investors, developers, contractors, designers, consultants, manufacturers and third sector organisations. It is intended for both those with an in-depth knowledge of Manchester, and those who are completely new to the city.

If you’d like to attend, complete our online application form by Friday 7 November 2014 to stand the best chance of success. All applications will be reviewed and places allocated to delegates by the end of November. We cannot guarantee a conference place for all applicants. Please note, delegates must be able to attend the full two days.

 

Design for Building Performance: New Build and Retrofit

#gvis – Green Design and Preconstruction

A good array of construction professionals attended our GreenVision event on 8th October 2014.  This event focused on Design for Building Performance: New Build and Retrofit and 3 fantastic speakers had been secured to deliver presentations.

Mark Siddall (Principal at LEAP) started the evening by talking about how to avoid the seven major pitfalls that prevent buildings from performing properly.  Mark Warner (Sustainability Manager at Leeds Beckett University Estates) followed to talk about his experiences of integrating sustainability into building projects.  Finally we closed with a presentation from Dr James Parker (Research Fellow at Leeds Beckett University) who talked about modelling and measuring the performance of a workplace retrofit natural ventilation strategy.

Mark Siddall talked about the projects he has worked on and, as a trustee of the Association of Environment Conscious Building, encouraged delegates to join the organisation – see here.   He explained there is a huge performance gap in domestic buildings right across the whole construction industry.  A Passivhaus project that Mark designed and managed has been studied by Leeds Beckett University. It was found that these were the First Homes that the researchers had ever found to actually close this aspect of the performance gap. (He noted that even the Passivhaus Standard did not directly address all of the technical requirements that were needed in order to achieve this.) Mark also talked about problems arising from poorly conceived natural ventilation strategies.  Why are people closing triple vents in winter he wondered?  He suggested that it may be related to comfort and the desire to avoid drafts.  Mark also questioned whether Part F of the building regulations are appropriate for noise standards.  He cited a literature review that he had undertaken with acoustician Jack Harvie-Clark (Apex Acoustics). They studied results from over 1000 homes. Their analysis highlighted that the Part F recommended household noise levels (for mechanical ventilation) will mean that every other person in the property will be dissatisfied i.e. one in two people. Significant steps are needed to address this not only in legislation but in design and construction processes also.  Mark then used the RIBA Plan of Work to help describe how redesigning the design process can assist with more effective and more affordable delivery of building projects. He noted that it is important to get the process right at the start of a project.  Mark encouraged delegates to think about good practice performance standards including the Passivhaus Standard, EnerPHit Standard, AECB Silver Standard, and the AECB Carbonlite Retrofit Standard.  Mark finished his presentation by explaining he is happy to host meetings with people that are interested in building performance and Passivhaus and desire to know more about these subjects. Additional information can be found on the LEAP practice website here 

Mark Warner began by saying these types of events are excellent opportunities for sharing experiences (positive or negative) and getting like-minded people together.  Mark explained how we (Leeds Beckett University) want to be the educated client, informing the design team with actual data.  Mark described how it has taken 8 years to get sustainability into the University’s corporate strategic plan and it’s important now to prove that it works.  Mark talked in detail about problems with specifying recycled content into tenders. He explained we ask for investment appraisals not ‘value engineering’ or cost cutting when looking at energy efficiency.  The University has a responsibility to be the social conscience and critic of society (New Zealand Education Act) and using recycled products is very important in closing the loop.  The University achieves 90%+ recycled rates on construction projects.  Mark explained that some of the supply chain cannot provide information on recycled content of products.  Mark’s plea is that everybody starts asking for recycled content in tenders so if lots of major organisations do this they will have to start to listen.  Mark confirmed there are 2 Passivhaus townhouses on the Headingley campus.  Mark works very closely with the research school when working on tenders.  The Portland building is currently undergoing an extensive refurbishment to open up existing vents to naturally ventilate floors.  Mark explained it seems to be working well so far but further research is required by Dr James Parker (the next speaker) to validate our design and in use experience.  There are still another 7 floors to be refurbished and Mark agreed this echoes what Mark Siddall said previously about highlighting problems early on in a project.

James Parker began by praising Mark Sidall.  James talked about a case study on the University Calverley Building which has a 60s built concrete frame.  James explained it’s important to remember this building had been very well insulated.  Focus was on the top 3 floors to begin with.  James explained his department is keen to look at domestic buildings.  The study looks at what buildings are made of, internal heat gains and understanding what is inside.  Analysis was carried out on overheating and heat gain.  Occupancy levels are an important factor and extremes have to be considered such as maximum staff levels and all computers being switched on.  James talked about early design analysis and the impact of local shading and heat gain from the sun.  James joked that we should build really tall buildings in front of buildings that overheat!  James explained the study looks at overheating and different things that can be introduced such as blinds.  If you reduce heat gain then you also reduce electricity.  James described how an isolated study had taken place on room 1010 which is a busy office that is always occupied.  The study had looked at this office on one of the hottest weeks of the year.  James stated to be a more informed client you need to understand more.  It is really important to test, examine and monitor and to feedback to the design team.

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Q and A summary

Observations from the floor included:-

  • Concerns about the EPC on existing buildings. Is this still worth the paper it is written on?
  • EnerPHit standard uplift and not being comparable
  • Is the PH Quality Assurance the best standard?
  • How will the CIBSE comfort model affect things?
  • Has testing been done on fluid dyanmics?
  • You’ve transformed a building into a building that is performing better. It’s important to put your study into perspective.

Mark Warner agreed that the results of the study have been great and the information gleaned will be used in future design.  James agreed it is cheaper and easier to deal with issues at the start of a project.

Some slides from the presentation given by Mark Siddall can be found here.

LEAP_Focus Finder_CENE_Leeds [Compatibility Mode]

Our next Green Vision event will take place on 12th November 2014 and will focus on Workplace Productivity: The New Business Case for Sustainable Buildings.   To hear more about this event and to book your place see here

Author:  Donna Lee

Workplace Productivity: The New Business Case for Sustainable Buildings

Join us on 12th November 2014 from 17:30-19:30.

This twilight seminar will focus on discussion and knowledge sharing on the topic of workplace productivity and healthy buildings.  We have secured 3 fantastic speakers and this event promises to be very interesting and informative.

To read more about this event and to book your place see here

Building Design and Performance

Don’t miss out on networking and speaking to designers , contractors , engineers and clients  all interested in Building Performance and quality environmental design . We will be hearing three perspectives on Building Design and performance and how this can best be done …

 

So far down to attend are the following:

Leeds Beckett University Estates

Rance Booth Smith Architects

Fairhurst

William Birch and Sons

BAM construct

Mott Macdonald

Leeds Beckett University

Leeds Sustainability Institute

Martin Walsh

East Riding of Yorkshire Council

Leeds Environmental Design Associates

University of Leeds

 

Don’t miss out Book here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is the future of UK Sustainability Standards Collaborative?

Following the conversations in the construction media, you may think that clients are forced to make a choice between BREEAM or Passiv Haus or One Planet Living, or that the youngster on the block, Living Building Challenge, is setting itself in competition with the established standards.

Sustainable design and construction professionals in the Green Vision debating area at Leeds Eco Fair on 22nd May 2014 heard that whilst all these approaches provide tools, guidance and certification, the future is collaborative, and that these standards can compliment each other.

Green Vision 2012, Green Building Drivers for 2012 presentation at Squire Sanders, Leeds

 

Chair John Alker (UKGBC) kicked off the panel debate with an audience poll, checking who has used the tools represented today, few hands were raised, and secondly who is here to learn more, most hands were raised.

John then invited the panel, Martin Brown UK (Fairsnape / Living Building Challenge UK Ambassador), Chris Herring (Passiv Haus Trust), Martin Townsend (BRE/BREEAM) and Sue Riddlestone (BioRegional / One Planet Living) to introduce the standards.

Sue Riddlestone reminded us of the concept of living within planetary boundaries, and how the One Planet Living scheme, based on 10 principles of sustainability, creates a common language for holistic living.

Martin Townsend reminded us that the popular BREEAM assessment method and rating system for building sets the standard for best practice in sustainable building design.

Chris Herring described Passiv Haus as a leading approach to low energy buildings focusing solely on the need to get our buildings performing efficiently, and that there is really no point designing buildings that look great if they do not perform correctly and efficiently.

Martin Brown introduced the Living Building Challenge as a regenerative sustainability philosophy and advocacy tool, based on required practices, not just current best practice, to stir the pot with other green standards, as arguably they are not challenging enough to address the broader sustainability agenda.

Questions from the audience included zero carbon homes for 2016, and how to value sustainable buildings by more than just financial measures.

Martin Brown saw the industry as being too unresponsive on the 2016 issue, that even after 8 years to prepare for the target we are still awaiting Government lead rather stepping forward with industry solutions. But importantly taking a broader look at benefits of health is essential, looking at health and social issues which we need to value alongside energy costs.

Chris Herring saw Passiv Haus being driven by those with vision, initially by passionate individuals but now a mixture ranging from schools to offices.

Martin Townsend commented on the need to understand where the government is at the moment with the Housing Standards Review, and really examine how we get to the ambitious 2016 targets, and bring the consumer on board to say I want lower energy bills.

Sue Riddlestone stated if we are serious about being sustainable get zero carbon in the building regulations, train the sector and alert the consumer.

John Alker invited comments and questions from the audience:

“I see the Living Building Challenge as a way of being, but it has to be the client that decides, so let’s have things from a client’s perspective rather than to beat a particular standard”

“How does Passiv Haus advocate healthy building products”

“Competition is a good thing, but are we competing against each other? Is there a danger that the standards are starting to compete and the vision of sustainability is lost?”

“The whole process is key”

“Speaking from a contractors point of view we need to see it as a driver for change and not the extra cost”

John Alker challenged the panel members to address these great comments , adding that you are all working in the same space, so, if we wanted to use all the standards, could we, should you not be doing this together?

Martin Brown commented its not just about tools, standards or accreditations, but a mindset for real and wider sustainability, and that whilst LBC is stirring the pot, it both compliments and challenges the other standards to reach farther.

Martin Townsend saw competition between standards as healthy, giving the customer choice, but that we need a common way to measure the same things, have consistency in systems, noting that the pace of change is not as quick as it needs to be.

Chris Herring reinforced the focusing on building performance; focus on the Passiv Haus standard “all the rest, including healthy building products is just fluff”

Bringing realism to the discussion Sue Riddlestone said we have to take a whole lifestyles approach, for example we use as much energy driving a car as a house.

A point picked up by Martin Brown – that we focus too much on ‘the building’, forgetting the community, social equality, human and diversity issues central to sustainability, observing the unacceptable and unjust practices in Qatar were producing high performing building “Lets not loose sight of the purpose of sustainability here”.

John Alker challenged the panel on how would you persuade a client to use your tool and how do you get across a business case.

Chris Herring saw the most important sell was to get people to visit a Passiv Haus, see first hand, consult the website and speak to somebody who actually live in one of the houses.

Martin Brown said we are selling the future built environment – healthy buildings that contain no harmful materials, have fresh air, using only sunlight are energy efficient but importantly, foster creativity and are a joy to live or work in. Martin suggested reading the LBC standard over the long weekend (Version 3 is out today) there will be something in there that will challenge your thinking, make you say wow.

Martin Townsend would ask clients the question “do you want a happy, healthy workforce, happy staff with water and energy savings”.

John Alker observed the obvious in that the people on this panel are passionate about this suggesting as leaders they come together regularly to discuss common ground, in panels and around the table, exploring future collaboration.

Author – Claire Bowles

First of it’s kind, virtual Construction 21 Expo – 14th & 15th May

Happening on 14th & 15th May is the first virtual construction trade show, Construction 21 Expo, which will showcase the latest in sustainable products & technologies for the European market. Leading green investors, developers, bankers, building owners, project managers, architects, engineers, facilities managers, technology, materials, products, and service providers along with municipalities, expert organizations and other key stakeholders of green building projects will participate in this one of kind event.

Visit the C21 Expo website http://construction21expo.eu/event-info.html and sign up now to join in from the comfort of your desk

Construction 21 Photo competition – send us your images!

Green Vision are delighted to have been asked by Construction 21 #Expoc21 to coordinate a photo competition happening over the two days and we want your entries!

Share your images, photos and screen grabs from within the show. We are looking for two types of entries, the best of each category will win a prize.

Category 1) Best image that captures the brightest greenest aspect of the show

Category 2) Best image that captures the best Avatar side of the show

Share to instagram, facebook or twitter, but make sure you use the hashtags #EXPOC21 and #EXPOC21snapped on instagram & twitter so we can pick up your images. 

The competition closes at midnight on 15th May. The winners will be announced on Friday 16th May.

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