Newcastle tops green city list

AECOM has welcomed the news that Newcastle upon Tyne has been named Britain’s greenest city.

A report by think-tank, Forum for the Future, looked at the sustainability of the 20 biggest cities, measuring factors such as air quality, wildlife and quality of life. Newcastle, which beat 2008 winner Bristol into second, performed well on many measures of sustainability.

AECOM, an engineering consultancy based at Trinity Gardens on the Quayside, is seen as one of the leaders in promoting sustainable design.

AECOM’s Sustainability Consultant, Emma Clark, said: “Over the last few years engineers have played a critical role in the quest to reduce global carbon emissions from buildings and become a major contributor to the broader sustainability agenda.

“Sustainability can play a central role in the process of urban regeneration. Carbon neutral buildings are a new phenomenon, but we have been looking at the environmental side of buildings for a long time. People have always been interested but it is only until recently that these things have become more accessible and cheaper.

AECOM’s innovative approach to sustainable design has seen it scoop several high profile awards. Last year at CIBSEs (Chartered Institution for Building Services Engineers) Low Carbon Performance Awards the company’s work on the ZEBRA project – a new build for the Department of Farming and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) in Alnwick- won the New Build Project of the Year prize.

AECOM was awarded the same prize the previous year for its work on City Campus East at Northumbria University. City Campus East was a flagship development which had sustainability as a guiding theme from its very inception. Reduced carbon emissions exceeded the 2002 Building Regulations requirements by nearly 40% while around 95% of existing material from the site of the former cinema was recycled.

Other green features included solar collectors on the roof to produce hot water, collecting rain water to flush toilets and sensor-controlled heating and lighting systems which ensure energy is only used when rooms are occupied.

Emma added: “The development is a highly visible symbol of recognition in Newcastle and illustrates how sustainability can play a central role in the process of urban regeneration.

“It is a working example of how inspired design and quality of construction can deliver exceptional value and sustainability, within budget.”

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