Creative Exchange

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Andy Brown
tel: 01223 460475

“One accurate measurement is worth a thousand expert opinions”
                Adm Grace Murray Hopper (1906-1992)

CAR has monitored the award-winning Creative Exchange building in St. Neots to evaluate its environmental performance.

Creative Exchange, designed by 5th Studio, provides shared workspaces aimed at nurturing creative workers and innovators. The Centre forms part of a strategy for Huntingdonshire to nurture new businesses and cultivate specialist skills for local people.

The client’s brief called for “an exceptional high quality flagship enterprise centre” and that the building should exceed the requirements of Part L of the Building Regulations in terms of sustainable construction. The project has been certified by the BRE as ‘very good’ in the BREEAM office category and has won a number of awards.

Creative Exchange was insulated above current standards and incorporates high thermal mass construction. The design also employs natural ventilation, space planning for good natural lighting, an 'Earth Duct’ to temper incoming air, solar thermal hot water and a green roof.

Funded through the TSB’s Building Performance Evaluation project, CAR carried out monitoring and research into the use of the building. We logged electrical consumption on all circuits, monitoring the temperatures and thermal gains from the earth tube, consulted the occupants on the effect of the building’s performance and carried out thermal image surveys and air pressure tests.

Through the research, monitoring and evaluation process, we can evaluate the effectiveness of the building's environmental features, as they were intended to be used and how their efficiency can be improved through user awareness. The project has informed the design team and builders on the successes and pitfalls of the features employed and the lessons will be carried forward to future projects.

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