Top marks for GVA office refurb

Simon Donohue

GVA's new Manchester headquarters has earned a Gold Ska rating from RICS – the first in the region for a refurbished office building.

Fit-out specialist TSK advised GVA on the refurbishment of its new base in PRUPIM's Norfolk House.

The Gold Ska rating is the highest rating from RICS for sustainable fit-outs.

The main contributing factors to achieving the Gold Ska rating include:

  • a total of 88% of waste generated from the project was recycled or diverted from landfill
  • lighting controls were used effectively to minimise energy use
  • only sustainably sourced timber was used throughout the project, with any unused and existing timber returned to the manufacturer rather than landfill
  • and, all wall coverings were supplied with an environmental product declaration, written in accordance with ISO 14025 standards.

TSK joint managing director Andrew Burns said: "This was a complex job as it had to be carried out within tight timescales in order to be ready for GVA's moving date.

"During the process we discovered that there is still a great deal of education required in the industry with regard to the sustainability of the interior fit out rather than the building itself.

"Throughout this project we came up against a lack of understanding as to the importance of sustainable fit out and the criteria for obtaining the highest of Ska ratings.

"This made sourcing appropriate materials more difficult and meant that the whole process needed to be monitored very closely.

"So we are delighted to have been able to meet the brief of achieving a Gold Ska rating for their new offices and set a new standard for office fit out in refurbished buildings in the process."

Mark Rawstron, regional senior director at GVA, said: "As property consultants it was important to us to lead by example by putting sustainability at the core of our office move.

"With the lack of new build accommodation coming forward in Manchester and the wider region, coupled with the upcoming changes to the Energy Act, it is more important than ever to ensure that our existing building stock, not just new build, is up to standard in terms of sustainability.

"We are proud to be the first in the North West to achieve a Gold Ska rating for a refurbished building and hope that our offices will act as an example of best practice for other occupiers to demonstrate what standards of sustainability can be achieved without compromising on quality and style."

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