Construction manager Keith Reynolds is proud of the recent Excellent BREEAM rating given to London's Francis Crick Institute, and explains why. "We began to gather information and data for AECOM (the client's consultants) as early as 2011, just after work on the site had started. In fact our project team were looking at the criteria we would be assessed against right back at the design stage."
So what does a major construction project need to do, and in particular what is BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) assessing, prior to awarding scores and certification?
The X Factors
"There are a number of factors," adds Keith, "for Health and Wellbeing you have to provide evidence of - indoor air quality, visual comfort, thermal comfort, water quality, acoustic performance, but also safety and security. In the Energy category you submit information relating to the reduction of emissions, energy monitoring, zero carbon technology, energy efficient transport and lab systems and energy efficient equipment.”
It's a similar story - and level of detail required - in a number of other categories as well, ranging from: Transport; Water; Materials; Land Use and Ecology, and; Pollution (with each having a number of strict criteria that had to be met). The Crick project team were each given a category to manage and close out, these related to their experience and speciality on-site and were forwarded onto Keith for collation and checking.
A new standard
Project Director Neil Smith was effusive in his praise for the team. "To receive an excellent rating with a score of 74.2% is testimony to the years of hard work and dedication that went into the living breathing facility that we see now in the heart of London's Kings Cross, with scientists, stakeholders and the public already benefiting from this unique centre of innovation and research. It has set a standard for us, and one that we'll be looking to match on major projects in the future."