Penoyre & Prasad held an event in September as part of Open City’s ‘Green Sky Thinking’ programme.

The retrofit of non-domestic properties to meet the UK’s carbon reduction commitment appears dauntingly complex with properties of different ages, size, construction, and with varied tenures demanding different solutions to almost identical purposes. Sunand Prasad gave a presentation which looked at the imperative of efficiencies through repetition and scale, and at emerging patterns which may help provide an effective blueprint, with reference to the practice’s current project the re-cladding of Guy’s Tower. An audience of about 40 people joined an erudite debate with most people focusing on the complexity of this issues and ways in which they might be simplified for the clients in terms of a) energy and carbon and b) value.

Some of the issues that were raised included:

  • The issue of trying to lock-in possibilities for future improvements even if they can’t be progressed now.
  • The reframing of the issues of value to encourage action in a depressed market – i.e. the loss in value through failure to address environmental issues now and in the future, rather than the issue being about green measures adding value.
  • The imperative to form a professional team early on, inclusive of architect, engineer and QS all equally wedded to sustainability as a driving project principal.