SEGRO Park Enfield Shows Bright Future for Wellness in Warehouses

27/06/2022

Wellbeing and sustainability innovations at SEGRO Park Enfield are creating the warehouse of the future. Smart building technology will empower occupiers to manage spaces that prioritise employee wellbeing and energy efficiency. Extensive glazing provides more natural daylight and opens up views. LED lighting and photovoltaic panels are incorporated to reduce carbon emissions. A fitness trail, riverside footpath and facilities for cyclists encourage active lifestyles.

Certified WELL Silver

BREEAM Excellent sustainability rating

Energy Performance Certificate A+

Situation

SEGRO is a leader in providing modern, adaptable warehouses to high sustainability standards, both in their development and in their operation. SEGRO Park Enfield is a 21,600m2 speculative scheme, comprising three best-in-class industrial units. 

SEGRO introduced a series of wellness and sustainability innovations at SEGRO Park Enfield. These include smart building technology, as part of a wider corporate pilot to shape the warehouse of the future, and their first WELL Silver certified building, led by the SEGRO Project Manager. Drivers included growing customer interest in how their buildings perform and the impact that has on their business, employees and the wider environment.

As standard on all new SEGRO developments, the project team also targeted a high BREEAM sustainability rating and Energy Performance Certificate score from the outset, along with on-site renewable energy generation and electric vehicle charging capability. The project team included architect Michael Sparks Associates, design consultant WPP, main contractor Winvic Construction Ltd and WELL consultant XCO2. 

Actions

Wellness

The building has been optimised to ensure that users enjoy enhanced daylight access, thereby boosting mood, circadian health and productivity. Over 90% of regularly occupied spaces receive at least 300 lux of natural daylight for half of all occupied hours. In addition to visual, emotional and psychological benefits, providing high levels of natural light reduces building energy use associated with electric lighting. Windows are operable for natural ventilation and, to reduce glare, all windows have adjustable blinds. 

Located near the King George V Reservoir and River Lea, the development also offers 4,690m2 of green space, with 189 trees planted to date. This will provide opportunities for customers’ employees to experience nature in their daily lives, which studies show can contribute to wellbeing and productivity.

To encourage active lifestyles, fitness equipment has been installed and a riverside footpath has been created, connecting to local footpaths. There are also cycle spaces, on-site showers and changing facilities, along with a water cooler for bottle refilling.

Air quality sensors in Unit 3 will monitor aspects including particulate matter, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, ozone, nitrogen dioxide and volatile organic compounds, so customers can actively manage the environment for wellbeing. Air quality thresholds have been set and lease agreements allow for sensors to be calibrated annually.

Unit 3, which is the largest building at SEGRO Park Enfield, has achieved WELL certification, and the other two units have incorporated WELL features, with the potential for certification where there is customer demand. 

Informed by this project, wellbeing enhancements that are now used across new SEGRO  developments in London include sensors to monitor air quality, water cooling, daylight and acoustics; enhanced air filters; water coolers; blinds to windows; acoustic seals to office doors; outdoor gyms and bike repair stands.

Smart building management

As part of the wider corporate pilot, sensors in Unit 3 will capture a range of data, including:

  • Energy use: identifying opportunities to improve efficiency, including through loading bay door management.
  • Wellbeing: monitoring and managing air quality, noise and temperature for employee wellbeing and productivity.
  • Utilisation: gaining insights into how space is being used to improve performance. To protect privacy, SEGRO uses radar-based technology rather than cameras. Radars are almost as accurate in detecting vehicles and people as cameras.
  • Plant performance: improving preventative maintenance programmes. For instance, monitoring how often loading bays are used before there are performance issues will enable proactive maintenance and inform lifecycle analysis, influencing future product choices.

Over time, SEGRO will pull this data together to give it and its customers a rich picture of how a building is performing through a dashboard available to all parties.

Reducing carbon emissions

Low carbon features at SEGRO Park Enfield include photovoltaic panels on the roofs, LED lighting and Twin-Therm roofing, which delivers low U-values and low air permeability for energy efficiency. There are also electric car charging points for every unit. The photovoltaics will generate an estimated 353,207 kWh annually, providing renewable energy for customers. 

Social regeneration

SEGRO has a strong social focus. Local contributions during the development of SEGRO Park Enfield include £1.1m local spend on materials and services, supporting the local economy and employment.

In addition, 275 people accessed training or employment opportunities during construction, through SEGRO’s £35,000 donation to local charities. One apprentice worked on site for six months, progressing towards a Level 3 Site Management qualification. Contractors also participated in a local secondary school careers event.

A report commissioned by SEGRO, Keep London Working, highlighted the importance of industrial land in London and the vital role it has to play in supporting the capital’s future economic and population growth.

There will be community access to the new riverfront green space at SEGRO Park Enfield. SEGRO will also continue to make a positive social impact to the Enfield community through its £10 million Centenary Fund. This will particularly help and inspire disadvantaged people into education, training and employment from communities across the UK and Continental Europe over the next decade.

Financial

Over time, SEGRO anticipates that smart and sustainable warehouses designed for wellbeing will become the norm for the prime market, and in the short term will be differentiators in marketing the development.

The photovoltaic panels will generate an estimated £46,000 of electricity annually, achieving payback within nine years. SEGRO will monitor energy efficiency cost savings through the metering system. 

Benefits

WELL benefits for customers at SEGRO Park Enfield include:

  • Improving employee productivity by providing good air quality.
  • Promoting productivity and better sleep patterns by providing good levels of natural light.
  • Promoting wellbeing by providing a connection to nature and external restorative spaces.
  • Providing space to encourage physical exercise.
  • Reducing absenteeism and sick days by providing comfortable internal temperature and humidity levels.
  • Reducing distractions and improving job satisfaction by providing good indoor acoustic performance.

Benefits of wellbeing and sustainability innovations for SEGRO include:

  • Differentiating SEGRO from its competitors and keeping it at the leading edge in a changing world.
  • Capturing the quality of SEGRO schemes and articulating benefits to customers, through WELL Silver certification, BREEAM Excellent sustainability rating and Energy Performance Certificate A+.
  • Supporting SEGRO’s target to be net-zero carbon by 2030

Challenges & Achievements

INDUSTRIAL

 

How to pilot smart technology in warehouses?

Generally, the industrial and logistics sectors are behind offices and retail when it comes to smart building technology. There are good reasons for this. Sensors tracking space utilisation in offices and retail are typically located a few feet above head height, with an operating range of three to five metres. This is insufficient for large warehouses, which can have ceiling heights of 30 metres. In addition, the physical nature of most industrial units means they are effectively giant Faraday cages: enclosures used to block electromagnetic fields, making use of digital technologies highly challenging. It can also be more difficult to make a business case for smart warehouses. In offices and retail, investment in digital building management systems often achieves payback relatively quickly through energy efficiency cost savings. In contrast, most industrial and logistics buildings use far less energy per square metre, making their payback periods longer. Furthermore, most logistics properties house single occupiers, without common areas and services, so owners have a more passive property management role.
However, as both a developer and a long-term owner of industrial assets, SEGRO is constantly monitoring emerging trends to ensure that its buildings are fit for the future. It identified rising customer interest in smart, sustainable warehouses that contribute towards better decision making and employee wellbeing, and therefore productivity. 

 

WELL

 

How to achieve WELL Silver in an industrial building?

At SEGRO Park Enfield, the company introduced the WELL target partway through the project, which made it more challenging to achieve some points. However, the whole project team came together and were open to changing specifications to support health and wellbeing. SEGRO appointed sustainability consultancy and WELL AP, XCO2, which guided the team through the WELL process, liaising with the architect, construction contractor, mechanical and electrical team and other partners. This process began with a detailed gap analysis to potential areas of non-compliance. Certifying an industrial building also required substantial engagement with the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI), as a number of features required a bespoke approach, such as the number and locations of smart sensors. The leasing agreement incorporates WELL requirements, including ongoing air, water and temperature monitoring, smoke-free environment and post occupancy survey of thermal comfort. Lessons from this project have already been taken forward to SEGRO Park Rainham and SEGRO Park Tottenham, and will also be utilised by the IWBI in the development of the WELL Building Standard

“The interest shown for SEGRO Park Enfield highlights the strong demand for quality industrial space in this part of London. Alongside wellbeing upgrades, we incorporated energy efficient specifications to reduce environmental impacts and make units more cost-effective for occupiers. We look forward to supporting Netflix at SEGRO Park Enfield by providing them with the space to enable extraordinary things to happen.” 

Alan Holland, Managing Director, Greater London at SEGRO