The 7 Air Street development in the Regent Street area of central London is currently the U.K.’s most sustainable heritage building. It is also the first ever Grade II listed building to achieve an “Outstanding” rating by BREEAM, the highest award possible from the industry body that judges best practices for sustainability in the built environment.

AECOM St Albans Building Services Engineering staff were part of the delivery team that transformed the 1920s office block into a workplace for the future with 21st Century facilities. The major retrofit has extended the useable life span of the listed heritage building while preserving significant amounts of its existing fabric and façade. Two existing office buildings with different ceiling heights, floor plates and facades have been brought together into a single, open-plan, grade A office space. The first five stories were refurbished, while floors six and seven were entirely demolished and rebuilt.

AECOM worked closely with the client, The Crown Estate, for over 17 years to deliver its £1 billion Regent Street investment program. As part of the Quadrant Masterplan, The Crown Estate is comprehensively refurbishing several historic buildings in the area, ensuring some of the U.K.’s most important assets are sustainably worked, developed and enjoyed to deliver the best value over the long term.

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Showcasing sustainability 

7 Air Street sets new benchmarks for sustainable office developments in the city. It features a long list of energy efficient technologies, including:

  • Connection to the central energy centre featuring fuel-cell technology that saves more than 350 metric tons of carbon emissions each year
  • LED lighting that uses 25 percent less energy than standard lighting
  • Double glazing that reduces heat lost through the windows by 65 percent
  • Low energy air conditioning that consumes 33 percent less electricity
  • Extensive bicycle provisions to promote worker health and well-being

There’s also an ecological roof that has 23 kilowatts of rooftop solar panels and flowers, vegetation and grass that provides a habitat for insects, birds and bats. This new pocket of green space also offers workers the opportunity to enjoy outdoor spaces during the day.

Further, AECOM’s energy masterplan, originally developed in 2008, has enabled this heritage building project to achieve the extraordinarily low carbon emissions required in order to deliver the client’s sustainability targets.  The central energy centre is a showcase for how we are able to anticipate a client’s requirements and continue delivering heritage building projects sustainably and profitably.

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Accolades for 7 Air Street

  • Winner of the “Sustainable Project of the Year” at the Building Magazine Awards 2016
  • Winner of the BREEAM Commercial Award 2015
  • Winner of the “Commercial Building Project of the Year” at The Energy Awards 2016
  • Winner of the “Delivery – Small Projects” award at AECOM’s U.K. & Ireland Excellence Awards

If you’d like to know more about this project, please contact:
All photos courtesy of Philip Vile photography.

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