HAUT project designed by Arup wins BREEAM sustainability award

19 April 2018 Consultancy.uk 4 min. read

A project designed by international engineering consultancy Arup has been awarded an accolade by the BREEAM Awards. The 21-storey wooden building in Amsterdam will leverage innovative cross-laminated timber to produce a sustainable and aesthetically pleasing structure, avoiding the harmful use of concrete.

Introduced by the Building Research Establishment (BRE) in 1990, BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method), is the world's longest established method of assessing, rating, and certifying the sustainability of buildings. In the 28 years since its launch, BREEAM has become the world’s leading sustainability assessment method for master-planning projects, infrastructure and buildings.

It is used to recognise the value in higher performing assets across the built environment lifecycle, from new construction to in-use and refurbishment. The system does this through third party certification of the assessment of an asset’s environmental, social and economic sustainability performance. This means BREEAM rated developments are more sustainable environments that enhance the well-being of the people who live and work in them, help protect natural resources and make for more attractive property investments.

In order to celebrate exceptional sustainable places and project teams working to obtain these standards, an annual BREEAM Awards ceremony takes place at London’s ExCeL Centre. This year’s ceremony, hosted by actor Robert Llewellyn, saw the design for HAUT, which upon completion will be tallest wooden building in Dutch capital city Amsterdam, honoured.

HAUT project designed by Arup wins BREEAM sustainability award

HAUT is to be developed by Lingotto, having been designed in collaboration between Team V Architecture and consulting firm Arup. Situated on the banks of the River Amstel, the structure, which will be the highest timber structure in the Netherlands, will stand at a proposed 73 metres and 21 floors, and is slated to start construction mid-way through 2018.

The project utilises cross-laminated timber, a process of creating reinforced timber that has similar strength profiles to steel – with low warping with age and contextually dependent low-fire risks – to avoid the environmental downsides of concrete construction, including the creation of 5% of global greenhouse gas emissions. The milling technology has also been used in a number of new developments, including the Dalston Works, designed by Ramboll in the UK.

According to a spokesperson for Arup, “The design offers the first buyers unlimited freedom of choice in dwelling size, number of floors and the location of rooms, outdoor spaces and voids. Within a strong and simple façade design, with white-grey floor tapes and high windows, the balconies seem to have randomly been slid in and out. The wooden ceilings of balconies and large overhangs on the sharp corner at the Spaklerweg make HAUT's architecture expressive and iconic.”

At the BREEAM Awards, HAUT was commended among a number of winning building projects with extraordinary achievements in sustainability, with the highest BREEAM score in the  'Homes - Design' category, of 90.8%. According to the judges, the building pushes the boundaries of high-rise timber buildings, with strong circular economic principles in its foundation – stating that the design is ‘impressive, innovative and highly replicable’.

This was the second successive year that both Arup and Team V were recognised by the BREEAM Awards. At last year's ceremony, Team V came away with the award with the Atlas Building of the Technical University Eindhoven, in the ‘Education & Healthcare’ selection, while Arup triumphed in the ‘Mixed Use’ category, for its work for the Energy Academy in Groningen.

Commenting on the buildings championed by this year’s BREEAM Awards, Alan Yates, BREEAM Technical Director and Chair of the Judging Panel, said, “By demonstrating the practicalities and benefits of sustainable solutions – particularly those that are widely replicable – these projects will inspire others to aim higher with their own developments, so driving improvement throughout their sectors and regions, and internationally.”