Aykley Heads office project - improving energy efficiency

Building Consultancy

The Building Consultancy team was appointed by the North East England Chamber of Commerce (The Chamber) in 2018 to complete the design, specification, project management and contract administration for the refurbishment of their Head Office at Aykley Heads in Durham.

The appointment came after Naylors successfully completed the refurbishment of The Stamp Exchange in Newcastle, also on behalf of The Chamber.

The 2-storey office at Aykley Heads accommodates The Chamber on the ground floor with the first floor available to let. The two floors of office accommodation total approximately 5,000 sq.ft.

One of the fundamental objectives of the project was to improve energy efficiency. The building’s location meant it was suffering from high levels of solar gain in the summer months whilst being very cold during winter. Without relying too much on mechanical services, we needed to consider how to make the building more comfortable all year round.

Naylors came up with a solution which made better use of the layout internally by strategically locating smaller rooms and installing energy efficient windows with a specialist film to reduce solar gain.

The team managed to eradicate the need for mechanical cooling as we made better use of natural ventilation.

Making the building more comfortable in the winter was also key, so the heating system was renewed to incorporate an energy efficient boiler.

Another key element of the brief was how to make the building sustainable in terms of power usage. The team considered various techniques but opted for solar panels, again making best use of the building’s location. Installing car charging points was also incorporated in order to encourage staff to opt for more efficient methods of travel. The brief was also met by installing a shower facility for the use of cyclists and runners.

The brief was met in terms of achieving the required efficiency levels by also incorporating the following measures:

· Upgrade lighting to LED’s throughout
· Replacement of the existing rainwater goods.
· Replacement of all internal and external doors
As part of the works, all finishes, fixtures and fittings were also renewed.

The project has drastically improved the energy efficiency of the building with the EPC rating moving from C74 to B40.

The installation of solar panels to the roof has helped to provide a substantial amount of the energy used during the working hours of the office. Combining this with the introduction of double glazed windows, new LED lighting, upgrading of the heating system and installation of car charging points means that the building’s impact on the environment has been significantly reduced.

The project duration was 14 weeks and finished on time and budget in summer 2018.

Commenting on the project, David Langley, chief operating officer at The Chamber said; “We are very pleased with the project Naylors have successfully completed for us, which provides The Chamber with a fantastic standard of office space. The office now provides a very pleasant working environment, which is far superior in terms of energy efficiency. We now look forward to welcoming a new tenant into the vacant first floor suite.”

For more information please contact deanclark@naylors.co.uk