Property Consultants Gleeds First For Environmentally Top-Rated Offices
Construction management consultants Gleeds is the first business to move into a major new sustainable multi-million pound Leeds city centre office refurbishment due to be completed this year.
Gleeds has taken an entire floor at Town Centre House, part of The Merrion Centre, which will become the first wholly-refurbished Leeds property to achieve an `excellent’ – the highest possible - Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) rating on completion.
Gleeds, which is providing project and cost management services to the refurbishment and has 13 other offices in the UK, has moved 45 staff, with space for a further 15, into 6,500 sq ft on the second floor of Town Centre House, owned by Leeds-based property investment and development company Town Centre Securities PLC.
The move is part of Gleeds’ wider `Grey-to-Green’ scheme which encourages staff to make their workplace more sustainable by adopting better environmental practices. The upgrade of Town Centre House, which includes adding an extra floor, will create six-stories with 50,000 sq ft of prime office space. Town Centre Securities, which has owned and managed the centre since it was built, will occupy two floors with the remaining three available for occupation.
Gleeds partner, Steven Green, says: "This refurbished office space maximizes productivity while providing the flexibility to support our ever-changing needs as a global consultant. It is helping us to achieve our social, environmental and economic targets and conforms to our environmental policy that doing business should not cost the earth."
The refurbishment incorporates on-site monitoring of waste management, energy and water consumption; full-height glazing and shallow floor plates to maximise natural light; waterless urinals, a heating and cooling system, including heat recovery; low-energy design and technologies such as variable speed pumps and fans and automatic lighting control.
There will also be a partly bio-diverse roof to enhance the site’s ecology and cut heat loss and, as well as the use of local, natural products, Yorkshire sandstone has been extensively used for the cladding. Co2 emissions are forecast to be reduced by more than 70 per cent and create lower running costs.
Town Centre Securities asset manager, Helen Beckett, says: "We believe that we have created a product which is unique in Leeds city centre. Town Centre House’s excellent green credentials and the quality of the accommodation make this the building of choice for quality and environmentally-aware occupiers."