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NEWS: NIAB's Sophi Taylor Building BREEAM 2015 finalist

20 January 2015

The National Institute of Agricultural Botany’s visitor centre has been short-listed for a national ‘green’ construction award for the second year in a row.

The Sophi Taylor Building, opened in 2013, is one of only four construction projects short-listed for the BREEAM 2015 award in the ‘offices – new construction’ category, in recognition of the building’s environmental credentials in construction and management. The other buildings are 1 Pancras Square at Kings Cross, Blox in Prague and the Tata Steel Visitor Centre in Port Talbot.

NIAB’s chief operating officer David Neill says: “We’re absolutely delighted that the Sophi Taylor Building has made the final list for the BREEAM awards for the second year under its post-construction review assessment. The primary objective when building the Sophi Taylor Building was to achieve a BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ category - the standards required were high and had to encompass all aspects of the project; from the earliest design stage right through to building operation. To be BREEAM finalists is a perfect tribute to the work of the entire project team.”

NIAB Innovation Farm's Sophi Taylor Building

Developed by the Building Research Establishment BREEAM is the world’s leading building environmental assessment method.  BREEAM 2015 finalists range from city centre towers to industrial facilities, schools and homes, and are drawn from the highest scoring buildings under the BREEAM schemes in the year ending 30 November 2014. The Awards recognise the achievement of those involved in the specification, design, construction and management of BREEAM certified buildings with the winners announced on Tuesday 3 March 2015 at a ceremony at the London Marriott Hotel.

The Sophi Taylor Building is on NIAB’s Park Farm research and trials site, on the outskirts of north Cambridge. It is the main venue for NIAB Innovation Farm, a pioneering knowledge transfer initiative established by NIAB to support the translation of plant science discoveries into practical application by linking the science base and industry. It has also proven to be a popular conference facility for NIAB and the agricultural and horticultural industries.

The single storey pavilion, constructed largely in timber with a roof covered by living plants and photo-voltaic cells, rainwater harvesting, automatic ventilation, biomass boiler and a zero carbon construction, has some of the most outstanding green building credentials in the UK. It was designed to meet the needs of users with minimal electrical and mechanical interference, making the most of the energy available to it from the sun and the users themselves, harvesting rainwater and conserving these resources for release when required.

This year there is a ‘Your BREEAM Award’ vote for the public’s favourite building from the short list...so please vote for the Sophi Taylor Building before midnight on Monday 12 February 2015!

To find out more about the Sophi Taylor Building download the leaflet here