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The Forum - Planning Application

6. Sustainability

A broad and holistic response to sustainability is at the heart of the brief for the new Potterrow building. Objectives have been agreed for economic, social and environmental performance as summarised in the headings below.

Economic Sustainability

Social Sustainability

Environmental Sustainability

The University has adopted two key targets in pursuit of their environmentals strategy. In the first place the University wishes to see a 40% reduction in carbon emission by 2010. In the second place the University has an aspiration for all new buildings to achieve a BREEAM excellent rating. The University also wishes the Potterrow Project to be benchmarked against the Environmental Performance Indicators promoted by the Movement for Innovation and this will require data on energy in use, embodied energy, waste, water, biodiversity and transport.

BREEAM Features

The University of Edinburgh (UofE) has declared its commitment to environmental issues in its Environmental Policy. These general aims have been developed in greater detail with respect to property, in general, and more specifically the Potterrow development. The requirements have guided the design development of the schemes for the Potterrow Development.

In summary, the current designs meet the goals of the UofE Environmental Policy relating to:

The UofE has an aspiration to achieve an Excellent rating under BREEAM 2004 for New Offices. This requirement is explicitly stated in the project brief.

These goals are to be met in the following ways:

Health, Welfare and Comfort

The internal environments of all the buildings is comfortable and avoids risks to health (legionella, contaminants etc.). Features include:

Transport Infrastructure

Use of Non-Renewable Energy Sources

Water Use

Materials Use


Global Atmospheric Impacts

Microclimate and Local Air Quality
Noise and vibration

Water Environment

Biodiversity & Ecology


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