BRE setting up green standard for broad developments

The Building Research Establishment (BRE) has been looking at ways to tally green values across entire developments, rather than single homes or commercial units.

The organisation’s series of BREEAM schemes are already a commonly-used standard for environmentally-sound construction projects in the UK, similar to the US Green Building Council’s LEED rating system.

Through a series of pilot projects including the Athletes Village for the 2012 Olympics and the BBC’s landmark Media City project in Manchester, BRE has been developing a sustainability standard that can be applied to developments as a whole.

Carol Atkinson chief executive of BRE Global said: “This new scheme is an important addition to the BREEAM family – it ensures we can provide certification for all the various stages of the life-cycle of buildings.

BREEAM Communities is an open source framework, which builds on the objectives of the existing Regional Sustainability Checklists already used by many developers. It is a powerful tool to assess the sustainability of communities and provide third party certification.

“It complements existing BREEAM schemes and the Code for Sustainable Homes, to provide a truly holistic approach to the sustainability of buildings and communities.”

Andrew Kinsey of Bovis Lend Lease has played a key role in piloting the scheme on the Athletes’ Village.

He said: “We welcomed the chance to participate in the BREEAM Communities pilot programme and feel there have been several benefits as a result.

“Firstly it provided us with a chance to test our plans and thinking against the credit criteria and adopting the robust BREEAM process challenged our design teams to provide the evidence necessary to prove compliance.

“Secondly it allowed us to provide real life feedback from a complex project, which I am sure will be helpful in developing the scheme for use on our future developments”.

Sam Bond

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie