Estonian Green Building Council: ELEMENTAL SKANSTE has the best result in energy calculation in the Baltics

The real estate developer’s Kapitel building ELEMENTAL SKANSTE in Riga has just received the result of its energy calculation according to the BREEAM criteria (certificate). It is the best result of any certified building in the Baltics that the Estonian Green Building Council is aware of. Now it is up to the other Baltic countries and projects to see if they can compete with it.

“The Estonian Green Building Council is collecting feedback from projects across the Baltics related to BREEAM and LEED certification and is publishing this information,” said Piibe Lind, Green Building Council expert. “Energy Performance Ratio for International New Constructions (EPRinc) is a ratio that defines the performance of BREEAM assessed buildings in terms of their service energy demand, primary energy consumption and CO2 emissions. Kapitel´s project ELEMENTAL SKANSTE has achieved the best result in this.”

“We are really proud that ELEMENTAL SKANSTE is a flagship in Baltics and according to calculation by BREEAM specification has set a new quality standard, complying with the requirements for near-zero-energy building. This is also a great responsibility and big challenge for our team and will keep us highly accountable in the construction process to perform according to the standard,” comments Indrek Moorats, Member of the Board and Development Director of Kapitel group.

“This is great news for Baltic States sustainability and for buildings that want to achieve a low energy rating but still have a largely glazed facade. Companies that choose sustainable construction paths set the highest standard for the construction industry, and this undoubtedly is recommendable and commendable. Energy efficient construction secures the rationality of true principles, solutions and technologies in building process and drives the economy of cities,” ads Hadley Barrett, CEO, Oxford Sustainable and adviser for Kapitel.

“The truth from building physics is that the more glazed façade is used the better its U-value (thermal transmittance of an envelope) and solar factor (total transmitted heat through the glass) have to be to achieve lower energy costs. This also helps to achieve better thermal comfort by having warmer surface temperatures during the winter and colder ones during the summer,” explains Urmas Saksakulm, leading designer of Kliimakonsult OÜ, having the qualification Chartered Engineer in Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC).

Andris Stankevics, Member of the Board and Technical Director of SIA Kapitel, the developer of project ELEMENTAL SKANSTE, states: “Already at a strategic level we believe that sustainability drives social development. Responsible construction is a wise choice for a safe and better tomorrow.To achieve low energy consumption, without abandoning the conveniences of modern life and quality working environment, we carefully revise every step within the project phase and design stage.”

BREEAM (Building Research Establishment’s Environmental Assessment Method) is the world’s leading and most widely used environmental assessment method for buildings. Its’ aim is to recognize and encourage developers to design buildings with minimized operational energy demand, primary energy consumption and CO₂ emissions and, by providing credible and environmental label for buildings, to stimulate demand for sustainable buildings.

With the soon-coming requirements from the European Union to develop near-zero-energy buildings, all the leading work done in developing new energy efficient buildings is an important step forwards, not only for the developer but for the Baltic countries which need to achieve better sustainable results.

Project ELEMENTAL SKANSTE is designed as a landmark of the new, self-sufficient and premium business district of Riga. These will be energy efficient and sustainable Class A office buildings developed in the BIM system and in line with the BREEAM standards. Before development of the construction plan, a procedure of environmental impact assessment was conducted. The first phase will see the completion of two 10-storey buildings containing 20 500 m² of office space and 370 underground parking spaces in first quarter of 2020. After completion of all building stages, ELEMENTAL SKANSTE will include five office buildings with the total area for lease of 41 400 m2 and will provide parking space for 1900 cars, in a multi-story parking, and underground parking space of some buildings. Completed with a convenient system of public transportation, a new tram line built on 2021, advanced car parking, and infrastructure that is tailored for cycling enthusiasts, ELEMENTAL SKANSTE will offer true mobility for tenants and visitors. The design of the buildings was developed by the Estonian architecture company Arhitektuuribüroo PLUSS in cooperation with its Latvian partner SIA Birojs T22.