At Kings Place, Savills has achieved the UK’s highest ever BREEAM rating for property management, on behalf of Deka Immobilien GmbH and WestInvest GmbH. To improve the building’s sustainability performance, Savills worked with Deka, occupiers and contractors at Kings Place on a range of initiatives to promote health and wellbeing, encourage biodiversity, enhance energy efficiency and reduce water consumption. Kings Place is part of a wider programme of BREEAM In-Use certification that Savills is rolling out for Deka.
BREEAM OUTSTANDING FOR PROPERTY MANAGEMENT – 95% SCORE
BREEAM EXCELLENT FOR ASSET PERFORMANCE – 75% SCORE
BREEAM AWARDS 2017 OFFICES IN-USE WINNER
INTERNATIONALLY RECOGNISED STANDARD – VALUED BY INVESTORS AND OCCUPIERS
Savills Property Management team manages a significant portfolio of office, retail, leisure, residential and industrial assets across the UK, ingraining a strong commitment to sustainability.
Kings Place is an iconic mixed-use building on the Regents Canal in London, close to King’s Cross St Pancras. Completed in 2008, Kings Place provides 31,000m2 of office space, let to high profile, blue chip organisations, and 3,500m2 of leisure space, including concert halls, art galleries, a restaurant, café and event facilities.
Kings Place is owned by Deka Immobilien GmbH’s WestInvest InterSelect fund and managed by Savills (UK). Deka requires sustainability certifications, such as BREEAM In-Use, as they are valued by investors and occupiers. Savills is working to achieve BREEAM In-Use across all properties it manages for Deka, as well as at properties for other clients. RPS Group assessed Kings Place through BREEAM In-Use International 2015.
Thomas Vazakas, BREEAM Assessor, commented: “Kings Place’s success in management and operation relies on a proactive and passionate building management team and an excellent relationship between the building management, building users and building owner.”
The Savills building management team, Andy Kerr and Sylvain Thouzeau, implemented a series of initiatives to upgrade the building’s sustainability performance and maximise BREEAM credits.
Health and wellbeing
Land use and ecology
Environmental Action Plan sets out annual improvement objectives for areas including energy, water, waste, transport, stakeholders, operational management, land use and ecology, health and wellbeing.
New key performance indicators for environmental, economic and social performance.
Performance reviewed quarterly and key objectives communicated at quarterly occupier meetings.
Sustainability upgrades resulted in:
How to maximise BREEAM In-Use credits?
The project was staged so the building management team had six months to make improvements before the final assessment. All team members were highly engaged and keen to demonstrate that Kings Place performs well. They commissioned technical assessments of air quality, lighting, acoustic levels, ecology and night time light pollution, incorporating the findings into the asset sustainability plan. They also identified improvement opportunities through the preliminary BREEAM assessment, which indicated that Kings Place would score 63% for asset performance and 59% for building management. The final scores were 75% and 95% respectively. Savills is now working to replicate elements of this strategy at Kings Place to improve the performance of other assets.
How to engage occupiers?
The building team and occupiers at Kings Place have worked together on sustainability for several years. This has contributed to a 10% reduction in electricity use and a 35% cut in gas use from 2012 to 2015, as well as an increase in recycling to 78%. Savills initially focused on BREEAM In-Use Part 1 asset performance and Part 2 building management, as these are areas where Savills has management control and direct access to information. Part 3 looks at occupier management. Savills is now exploring with occupiers the potential for a Part 3 assessment. This is more common in single-let buildings, whereas Kings Place is multi-let and mixed-use. However, there is strong occupier interest during meetings, particularly following the success of the Part 1 and 2 assessments. Kings Place occupiers are using the BREEAM Outstanding In-Use in their communications. Occupier engagement has been important in gaining buy-in on planned improvements, such as the installation of a solar PV array on the roof.
How to gather the necessary evidence?
At Kings Place, the team’s strong record keeping meant they could provide all the evidence required. However, in many buildings, documents from the construction phase are simply not available, e.g. for the specification and testing of equipment, and so some credits are missed. This is due to a wider industry issue regarding commissioning and the handover from development to management. BRE is also prescriptive about what evidence is valid. For instance, for energy data, supplier invoices are required, rather than meter readings. Similarly, waste contractors need to confirm in writing where waste has gone; standard waste reports are not enough. A revision is planned for BREEAM In-Use, which hopefully will address some issues. In addition, Savills is working with BRE, Redevco and Longevity on a pilot to establish a methodology to make the whole process more efficient for large portfolios, whilst maintaining robustness. For instance, if the same Environmental Policy is applied across a portfolio of ten properties, once it has been assessed at one property, this could be applied to all ten. More on this project here.
Sylvain Thouzeau, Building Performance Manager, Savills (UK) Ltd
“The BREEAM In-Use assessment and certification scheme takes a holistic approach to review a wide range of environmental and social impacts in buildings and provides a means of determining areas of improvement. We were keen to take this route at Kings Place not only as a challenge but to improve our sustainability performance, drive our services towards an outstanding level and develop our practices beyond the industry standards.”