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SPECIFIC’s Active Classroom is shortlisted for ‘Sustainable Project of the Year’ at the Building Awards 2017

Following the success at Constructing Excellence Wales 2017, where the Active Classroom won the ‘Innovation Award’, the classroom has been shortlisted for further recognition at the Building Awards 2017.

The Building Awards are the industry’s longest running and most prestigious recognition of excellence, and allow companies across all aspects of building to have their achievements held up as an example to the sector. There are 23 categories to enter and the Active Classroom has been shortlisted for ‘Sustainable Project of the Year’.

Within the category, which is sponsored by Fenwick Elliot, competition comes from the likes of;

119 Ebury Street – David Morley Architects

9 Greyfriars Road, Reading – Greengage Environmental

House 19 – Jestico + Whiles

Scottish Power Headquarters – TÜV SÜD Real Estate

The GlaxoSmithKline Centre for Sustainability – Morgan Sindall & Fairhursts Design Group

Trumpington Community College – Morgan Sindall

Virido, Cambridge – Hill

Last year’s winner was 7 Air Street by AECOM, which was the first West End office refurbishment to be BREEAM, 2011 ‘Outstanding’ certified. We hope to follow in the same footsteps on November 7th when the winner is announced at Grosvenor House Hotel, London.


Info on the Active Classroom:

The active classroom, designed to be energy positive was developed at Swansea University’s Bay Campus. It showcases and integrates new building integrated products and technologies developed both at SPECIFIC and with its industrial partners.

It will enable data to be gathered to inform research and the construction industry as to the design of cost effective energy efficient buildings of the future.

It was constructed by a novel construction method from lightweight, steel framed interlocking panels that comprised walls, floors and roof (Matrix). The superstructure alone comprises 16 tonnes of steel and the building showcases new cladding colours; magnetic Coretinium® wall panels internally and two transpired solar collectors (TSCs) integrated into the south façade (Tata Steel).  The latest energy efficient windows (NSG Pilkington) were used throughout whilst a living wall promotes biodiversity consistent with the adjacent Crymlyn Burrows SSSI.

The roof comprises Building Integrated PV (BIPVCo – a spin-out of Swansea University) and can generate17kWp electricity. Storage, i.e. the design and installation from solar collection to storage connectivity, was undertaken in collaboration with Solar Plants (local SME) and utilised two aqueous hybrid ion batteries capable of 40kWh storage using a 24kVA AC Inverter system.  This has the capability to power the classroom for 2 days from the batteries alone and uses ~ 1.5x Energy Consumption of a typical family home. Energy release was achieved using SPECIFIC’s own 10kW novel underfloor heating system.  This has the advantages of being fast, zonable and controllable. A comprehensive metering and monitoring system was designed and installed throughout the classroom.

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