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Durham University opens BREEAM Excellent headquarters

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PH Partnership and Space Group collaborate on student support hub

A £50 million headquarters building for Durham University, designed by PH Partnership and Space Group, has opened with a Breeam ‘excellent’ rating.

The Palatine Centre brings together the university’s student support services, which were previously located in various locations around Durham.

Solar thermal collectors, photovoltaic panels, air source heat pumps, rainwater harvesting, natural ventilation and sedum roofing were all used to achieve the building’s sustainability rating.

Chris Higgins, vice-chancellor of Durham University, said: “Our architects, designers and developers have done us proud in creating a building we hope may be listed in 50 years time and with environmental credentials fit for the 21st century.”

Fifteen percent of the roof has been planted with flowering sedum to help maintain the building’s temperature. Solar collectors help reduce the amount of energy needed for water heating.

The building was designed to maximise the amount of light entering through the north-facing glazed facade. Artificial lighting is controlled by daylight sensors and motion detectors to further reduce energy demand.

Andrew Grounsell, associate director at Space Group, said: “We hope it will transform administrative working practices and become central to the identity of the university.”

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Readers' comments (1)

  • zecks_marquise

    timber, check
    green roof, check
    funny windows, check
    incomprehensible mismash of ideas, check

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