HQ: +44 (0) 1905 362 300   |   London: +44 (0) 208 0596 526   |   Birmingham : +44 (0) 121 312 3876   |   Cardiff : +44 (0) 2920027983   |  


HQ: +44 (0) 1905 362 300   |   London: +44 (0) 208 0596 526   |   Birmingham : +44 (0) 121 312 3876   |   Cardiff : +44 (0) 2920027983   |  

Sustainable Design

Sustainable Design

Your journey to Net Zero

Sustainability is central to ONE’s vision: “Creating a better world through design, sustainability and innovation.”

The future is Net Zero-Carbon, in both retrofit of existing building stock and new construction, and we pride ourselves on creative solutions using the latest technology to achieve our clients’ net zero goals. Our advice enables you to choose low carbon products, make informed decisions to achieve a low carbon footprint for your built assets and ensure low carbon emissions – vital for a low carbon economy.

RIBA’s sustainable outcomes

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) identified eight sustainable outcomes for buildings in line with the UN Global Compact and the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The eight sustainable outcomes outline the key performance metrics and design principles that ONE follows to help contribute to a sustainable future. RIBA’s guidelines are clear, measurable, realistic, and transparent between expectations and outcomes. They provide a simple checklist and address the triple bottom line definition of sustainability and Social Value balancing social, environmental and economic value.

This approach gives ONE creative flexibility to use the most appropriate sustainable assessment methods and modelling tools to achieve the outcomes and targets for each individual project:

  • Net Zero Operational Carbon
  • Net Zero Embodied Carbon
  • Sustainable Water Cycle
  • Sustainable Connectivity & Transport
  • Sustainable Land Use & Ecology
  • Good Health and Wellbeing
  • Sustainable Communities & Social Value
  • Sustainable Life Cycle Cost.

Lowering Carbon, Reducing Pollution and Improving Biodiversity

Sustainable design is not only about low carbon, but also about improving biodiversity and reducing pollution. Being multi-disciplinary means that sustainability isn’t just an ‘add on’, it is an integral part of the design and by involving all disciplines at early stages, it can really influence the performance of the project. For example, our landscape architects can provide advice on improving biodiversity, carbon offsetting with effective planting and our engineers can incorporate sustainable building services, renewable energy and sustainable drainage systems (SuDs) as well as innovative low embodied carbon designs for structural and civil engineering solutions.

We can also use compliance tools such as passivhaus design with our inhouse Certified Passive House Consultants/Designers to achieve low energy design. Passivhaus is a leading international design standard, slashing energy use from buildings and delivering high standards of comfort and health. The standard achieves, durable, resilient buildings that reduce heating and cooling demand by up to 90%, dramatically decreasing building related carbon emissions and running costs.

Intelligent use of data

Energy engineering is crucial. Our experienced Mechanical and Electrical team model effectively using the latest industry software to maximise your low carbon investment. We can ensure your project uses low carbon technology, renewable and low carbon energy as well as advise you on payback periods for green energy while our structural engineering team implement embodied carbon assessments and our civil engineers aim to engineer and integrate sustainable drainage options to enhance biodiversity and reduce construction materials.

ONE’s Digital Estates team is also helping clients to unlock data-driven decarbonisation opportunities through the utilisation of smart building technology. Our systems and processes enhance the user’s interpretation of data through visual intelligence and advanced analytics. Understanding a facility’s performance and space utilisation on a granular level allows users to set benchmarks, identify opportunities and accurately measure the impact of energy-led interventions. In turn, creating a healthier, safer environment for building users.

The benefits

As well as environmental benefits, a sustainable approach could cost you less in the long term with the team able to advise on payback periods. There are also significant health benefits, for example, through the use of natural materials, maximising outdoor spaces and enabling natural light for wellbeing purposes.

Every project is different and we pride ourselves on bespoke, innovative sustainable solutions. For one healthcare client our design maximised the nearby river as an asset providing attractive views for patients, enabled use of the riverside for the community for wellbeing purposes, while also suggesting an innovative approach to generate heat from the water. For another project the team analysed an all-electric scheme through current EPC ratings, taking into account running costs, and this innovative approach is being adopted.

ONE’s commitment

We are proud of our sustainability achievements and are committed to doing more. We have the internationally agreed ISO 14001 Environmental Management certification, have signed up to the industry’s Climate and Biodiversity Emergency Declarations for each discipline and are Positive Planet certified in our commitment to achieve Net Zero by the end of 2026.

We have been recognised in many sustainability awards and are proud to have won:

  • The 2019 Healthcare Estates Sustainable Achievement Award
  • The Sustainability category at the Constructing Excellence 2020 West Midlands awards
  • The Sustainability Award at Insider’s West Midlands 2020 Property awards
  • Best Carbon Reduction Initiative at the National Building Better Healthcare awards
  • Highly Commended for Sustainability at Herefordshire and Worcestershire’s 2021 Chamber of Commerce awards.

Contact Us today

By engaging with our team at the earliest opportunity you can ensure that sustainability is central to your design.  You can find out more about our disciplines on our ‘What We Do’ page but why not pick up the phone today, it would be great to speak with you about your projects and we will guide you through the options available.

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