Green Gown Awards 2016 Built Environment University of the West of England Highly Commended

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Soft landings: Keeping it REAL

At the University of the West of England (UWE) Bristol, Soft Landings is all about keeping it REAL: Realistic – Embedded – Active – Lessons learnt. UWE Bristol have been using BSRIA Soft Landings principles on a number of projects over the last 2-3 years, trialling different approaches with different contractors and procurement routes.

On the recent HEFCE RGF3 funded refurbishment of Bower Ashton’s A-Block, UWE Bristol achieved a 45% carbon saving over the pre-refurbished building based on 18-months post-occupancy data. The difference between the ‘design’ and ‘performance energy consumption differed by only 25% by utilising realistic assumptions for occupancy and equipment in the energy modelling, as well as focusing on successful handover and training. 

The REAL Soft Landings process has provided the framework to fully understand the reduced consumption figures. Having used BSRIA Soft Landings principles on a number of different projects, UWE Bristol are now championing the REAL approach for Soft Landings on all future major building projects.

Top 3 learnings

1 We found that being realistic about what was achievable was the most fundamental part of the relationship between contractors, project managers and client estates team

2 We found the energy modelling (modelled and actual) the most interesting and useful tool in communicating impact of the actions and decisions made

3 We learnt that timing is everything. Particularly when carrying out User Surveys with students!

CO2t Savings: 431.5TCO2  per year
Actual/Estimated: Actual
No. of yrs: Immediate savings, to continue for the life of the building use

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