New primary care building makes history by securing top sustainability rating at design stage.
Houghton-le-Spring Primary Care Centre is innovative in the health sector, embracing a number of integrated low energy design and technological features:
Energy Reducing Design Features
- The building was orientated to take advantage of solar gains during the winter months, but shading was provided to prevent overheating
in the summer.
- An innovative low-energy ventilation system was developed in conjunction with Breathing Buildings. The system is incorporated into the building fabric and includes a thermal wall, to provide natural ventilation and passive cooling to the public spaces.
- Exposed concrete slabs and a high density internal thermal wall exploit the thermal mass providing passive cooling during summer.
- The building envelope U-values were enhanced 20% above the minimum requirements of Approved Document L and the air permeability rate was enhanced 40% above the minimum requirements of Approved Document L.
- Heat recovery was considered for all ventilation systems (with the exception of catering) and implemented where appropriate (all of the air handling systems are full fresh air).
- High efficacy lighting was specified.
- Intelligent lighting controls were specified, including daylight compensation.
- Rainwater Harvesting will provide
the needs for toilet flushing.
Low/Zero Carbon Technologies
- A 550kW ground source heat pump system serves the underfloor and radiator space heating, and the heating and cooling needs of the mechanical ventilation systems.
- A 350m² monocrystalline solar PV
array mounted on the roof.
- 10m² solar thermal array serving
the hot water load.
- A 5.5kW wind turbine.
The development has been certified to BREEAM 2008 ‘Outstanding’ rating for the design phase, the 1st in the healthcare sector.