The WWF’s Living Planet Centre: A leap forward in sustainable building design

Screen shot 2014-12-17 at 14.50.05The stunning WWF’s Living Planet Centre was designed by environmental design consultants Aterlier Ten and is the home to the World Wildlife Foundation.

The complex brief reflected the core sustainability and energy values that the building had to achieve. They also had to incorporate the public car park into the building, resulting in the stilts the building sits on.

Every aspect of the £15million building was considered in terms of environmental effect. For instance their realised that high spec double glazing would be better than triple glazing due to the carbon content. I was also impressed by how much natural daylight there was on both stories of the building. The curved timber roof and glass optimises natural daylight, reducing their lighting demands. They also have numerous solar panels, which provides up to 1/5 of their electricity.

Interviewing sustainable construction firm Willmott Dixon
Interviewing sustainable construction firm Willmott Dixon

Atelier Ten looked at the ecology of the site in depth and created ways to utilise every aspect. Rainwater runs off the roof into the flowerbeds before dripping through and being retained. Their air ducts and heat pumps allow them to use temperatures underground to heat or cool the building.

I interviewed Atelier Ten’s Principle Patrick Bellow about the project and how it was realised. His passion and knowledge was infectious and he firmly believes that with smarter design all future buildings can be much more sustainable without breaking the bank.

Screen shot 2014-12-17 at 14.49.26
Patrick Bellow, Principle, Atelier Ten

This building achieved a BREEAM “Outstanding” rating due to its environmental and sustainable achievements. This project features on our documentary a British Construction: A Green Approach. This broadcasts on Sky and ITV/BBC Freesat early next year.

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