Following a period of feedback on the draft guidance, the final issue of BREEAM New Construction 2014 went live on the 27th May. The final scheme includes a number of significant changes from the original draft, and the BREEAM team at Method have been reviewing these, and how they will affect the assessment process.
The management section contains an important change under Project Brief and Design, where the mandatory requirement to achieve the ‘Stakeholder Consultation’ credit has been removed. This early stage requirement would have created a considerable issue and we are confident the removal of this mandatory requirement will be a benefit to many project teams. Also, the ‘Sustainability Champion (Construction)’ credit no longer requires unannounced spot checks, but will still require the sustainability champion to monitor site activities with sufficient frequency.
A noteworthy change to the Health and Well-being section is the removal of the requirement to achieve the ‘Glare Control’ credit in order to meet the ‘Day-lighting’ criteria, which may lead to project teams achieving an important extra credit. Criteria have also been introduced for air conditioned and free-running buildings for the ‘Thermal Comfort’ credit. The ‘Security of Site and Building’ credit has seen a major re-structure; with the introduction of new terminology including an evidence-based “Security Needs Assessment”, which is to be carried out by a “Suitably Qualified Security Specialist”.
The credit also no longer requires a post-construction assessment to be completed. Important changes to the Energy section include the removal of ‘energy monitoring’ credits for Shell Only/Shell and Core assessments entirely, and the introduction of requirements for specified passive design measures and LZC technologies, to account for a meaningful reduction (of at least 5%) in energy demand and CO2 emissions respectively. Further significant changes include a change to the core amenities required for the ‘Proximity to Amenities’ credit in the Transport section, which the removal of “access to an open space” as a core amenity. Also, the ecologist’s site survey in ‘Enhancing Site Ecology’ is now required at RIBA Stage 2, rather than RIBA Stage 1. There are plenty of minor changes within the final scheme, but these are some of the major points to consider. We are happy to see that the BRE have taken on board much of the feedback on the draft issue, and that these changes will make the new 2014 scheme more accessible to many new projects.
Author: Craig Morey, Sustainability Consultant at Method