Work starts on UK’s first design-reviewed 5.5 Star NABERS building – a new net zero workplace in Victoria

Quadrum, the global real estate development, investment management and advisory group, has commenced construction on its sustainable office redevelopment at 11 Belgrave Road, which will deliver 108,000 ft² of Grade A space in Victoria, London. The scheme is the first in the UK to achieve an Excellent 5.5-star NABERS* design-reviewed target rating for building efficiency and one of only three to be pre-certified across the country.

Designed by Eric Parry Architects, the project is being constructed by BAM Construction. When complete in Q4 of 2023, it will transform the existing site into 108,000 ft² of net zero carbon office accommodation. 11 Belgrave also includes 14,000 ft² of communal spaces and best-in-class facilities, including a 3,300 ft² café and 4,600 ft² gym. In addition, 13,000 ft² of exceptional green space designed by landscape architects Gillespies will be seamlessly woven throughout. There is a 2,600 ft² private garden at ground floor as well as spacious indoor and outdoor amenity spaces, a private terrace on the sixth and multiple terraces on the seventh floor, plus a rooftop platform offering 360-degree views over London. There will be storage for 178 bikes, 5-star spa-style changing rooms with 19 showers, and 177 smart lockers.

11 Belgrave meets the highest sustainability and wellbeing credentials, taking its place as one of the capital’s most sustainable office buildings. Led by engineering consultancy Max Fordham, it has been designed to be net zero carbon in both construction and operation, surpassing the RIBA 2030 Climate Challenge target by 38%. Max Fordham have also led the NABERS process and the WiredScore Platinum and SmartScore Platinum targets, while environmental consultant Delta Green has advised on a design stage BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ rating and Ekkist on WELL Platinum.

Ilyas Aslam, chief operating officer at Quadrum, said:

“Designing the redevelopment of 11 Belgrave Road has been an exciting opportunity to deliver a ground-breaking landmark office building for the next generation of occupier, focused on the highest ESG standards in an exceptional location and with wellbeing at its heart. By investing the time and effort to pre-certify its credentials, we can demonstrate real value rather than intention.

“The scheme combines beautiful architecture with exceptional occupier experience, providing the highest quality, flexible workspaces. Spacious terraces and the stand-out private garden provide areas for outdoor working, relaxation and events in an immersive, natural habitat to cultivate a healthy, productive place to work. Located just three minutes’ walk from London Victoria train station, it delivers a sense of serenity whilst providing access to a thriving, lively urban neighbourhood and excellent transport connections,”

Robert Kennett, director at Eric Parry Architects, said:

“The project to comprehensively refurbish 11 Belgrave Road will transform a tired, underperforming 1950s office into a class-leading sustainable workplace with a focus on wellbeing. The refurbishment will deliver a new identity with the quality and energy performance benefits of a new building, while reducing the carbon emissions associated with construction by retaining a significant portion of the existing concrete frame, and by pushing best practice throughout the construction and specification.

“Our scheme meets the challenge to deliver a building that sets a new standard for the Victoria office market and delivers a positive outcome for the local area. The 67 metre-long facade of the building responds to the setting of Ecclestone Square terraces and incorporates planting as part of a site-wide strategy to introduce greenery to the site for the first time since the fifties. A new social space on the ground floor, with a café and coworking area, will extend the public life of the building,”

Henry Pelly, principal sustainability consultant and partner at Max Fordham, said:

“Max Fordham, and I, personally, are really pleased to be working with Quadrum on this ambitious and innovative project. 11 Belgrave Road is an exemplar for how to convert an existing building that is not currently fit for purpose, into a high quality, low operational and low embodied carbon, office space.

“We’re excited to be leading on NABERS—the only office-specific, in use, energy efficiency rating system—and 11 Belgrave Road’s pre-certified rating of 5.5 is the highest of any building in the UK. Our MEP strategy is focused on minimising carbon in operation and arming the building users with information and flexibility to aid this. Passive ventilation and thermal mass are supported by “smart” mechanical ventilation with display screens to inform occupants of real-time energy use, heating and cooling is provided by ASHPs located in the basement (which freed up an additional floor of useable space), and carbon filters improve air quality for the building users. “We are also supporting Quadrum with targeting Wiredscore platinum and Smartscore platinum, which gives potential tenants assurance that the building will deliver an exceptional user experience, be adaptable to a particular tenant’s needs and be fully future-proofed so that the building can continue being used for many years to come,”

CBRE and JLL are the joint agents for the scheme.