Breakfast Seminar: Design for Performance


The Better Buildings Partnership (BBP) is linking up with NABERS in Australia to develop a NABERS-like scheme in the UK, following successful pilot studies by the Design for Performance initiative. To kick-start market uptake, at least seven major UK property developers have committed to pioneer the ‘Design for Performance’ (DfP) process in full on at least one new office development in their pipeline.

The ability both to measure and rate energy performance outcomes and have a process that gives confidence to developers that they can achieve the performance they have targeted for a new building will be one of the key enhancements embraced by the imminent update to the BCO Guide to Specification. It is seen by the BBP as a unique opportunity to close the energy performance gap and create the mechanisms here that have successfully driven a transformation of the energy performance of the prime office market in Australia over the last decade. Design for Performance aims to replicate Australia’s success; this means setting an operational performance target at the start, incorporating the target in supply chain requirements, engineering buildings so that their base building energy use is measurable and verification of the rating and disclosure to the market after the first year of full occupation. 

The BBP and BCO held a joint seminar on Wednesday, 6th February at Arup, with speakers Sarah Ratcliffe, the Better Buildings Partnership programme director, Robert Cohen from Verco, the DfP Technical Lead and Stephen Hill, Building Performance Engineer from Arup, to share the findings/results from the pilot studies and outline the introduction of the DfP/NABERS scheme to the UK and what this means for developers and investors, designers and occupiers, including examples from the Pioneers’ current development activities.