Project of the Year – Retrofit
This award recognises and celebrates the retrofit of a building that most effectively demonstrates high levels of user satisfaction and comfort while delivering outstanding measured building performance. It is open to all types of building.
Winner: Bartlett School of Architecture, 22 Gordon Street – BuroHappold Engineering
Turning a cramped, 1970s university building into a modern, flexible home for the Bartlett School of Architecture has earned BuroHappold Engineering this new award, which recognises the importance of achieving good quality, sustainable retrofits in the drive to meet zero carbon targets.
The judges were particularly impressed with the pre- and post-occupancy evaluation (POE) of its £22m refurbishment of University College London’s 22 Gordon Street. This ‘really stood out’, helping BuroHappold achieve a 60% reduction in energy use per m2 – despite the usable floor area of the building increasing by more than 40% and greater environmental control being provided.
The building’s DEC rating improved from G to D, and the judges commented on the detail of BuroHappold’s energy-consumption analysis. It had taken a lot of effort, they noted, and the excellent quality of the data provided a clear and honest picture of operational performance.
The project’s creative use of space and resources was also praised for showing ‘genuine ambition’, while good engagement with stakeholders had helped define user needs, said the judges.
Building Use Studies (BUS) showed that staff and students were most satisfied with the design of the building, the image it projected to visitors, and desk space, while personal safety and control over lighting also scored well.
The culture of performance, feedback and learning was a factor in the award judges’ decision, and this was demonstrated at 22 Gordon Street. The BUS revealed there were some areas that could be improved, including thermal comfort on the upper floors and air quality in the basement workshops. In response, BuroHappold supervised two MSc students from UCL Bartlett to investigate these and present their findings to the building's FM and sustainability teams.
As a result, power to workshop equipment now only switches on when the extraction system is activated, and HVAC time controls are aligned with when the building is expected to be in use.
Building services consultant: BuroHappold Engineering
Building owner, occupier, developer and facilities manager: University College London
Project manager: Mace
Quantity surveyor: Aecom
Brief consultant, architect and interior designer: Hawkins\Brown
Mechanical/electrical engineering contractor: Vaughan Engineering
Main contractor: Gilbert Ash
Sustainability: Expedition Engineering; Southfacing Services
POE: BuroHappold Sustainability
Appleton Tower Recladding - BuroHappold Engineering
Discovery Gardens Retrofit - Griffin Consultants
Two Pacific Place Retro-fit and Sustainable Development - Swire Properties
Wilkins Lower Refectory - Burwell Architects