Pedder & Scampton will take a holistic view of your project and make sensible design decisions that will ensure your building is as sustainable as possible for the rest of its life. As a priority we aim to get fundamental issues right that minimise carbon emissions, energy consumption, waste and the embodied energy in the materials used without adding any costs.  At the outset of your project we will therefore review the opportunities and difficulties your given site offers. This will involve careful consideration of siting and orientation, access, and the possibilities for incorporating renewable energy sources, using recycled materials, materials with a low embodied energy and so on. Where appropriate, and particularly for new buildings, we will do this in conjunction with consultants who have specialist sustainability knowledge.

Our review ensures that sustainable issues are considered at the outset and incorporated into the preliminary sketch designs and not just bolted on. A key consideration is to ensure that sustainable measures are appropriate to the building’s user group and management systems. This means they need to be affordable, easy and inexpensive to run and maintain, and offer a long term benefit to the running costs of the building.  For example a biomass boiler may appear to be a good solution, but demands very regular attention and somewhere to store the bulky biomass.

For all projects we aim to orient the building to maximise the use of natural daylight and benefit from solar gain where useful, and to provide shading or avoid large areas of glazing where not. The quality of internal environments is very important to us and we aim to create designs that avoid overheating and glare without the need for air conditioning. Similarly, we aim to design in a way that minimises waste and avoids replacing sound building fabric unless essential. In refurbishment work we often upgrade and reuse elements such as existing windows and doors rather than replacing these. We enjoy giving new life to old spaces rather than just demolishing and starting again.

Materials are sourced locally where possible and we consider reclaimed materials as well as new. We constantly review the possibilities for efficient insulation – which is particularly critical for our inner city work where sites are often very tight and construction thicknesses can act as a major constraint on a project. We evaluate the benefits of green roofs and solar panels for all projects. Our interests extend into the landscape around the building and we have designed gardens for several projects that have included features such as wildlife friendly ponds and planting to provide a variety of habitats.