This year, NEPI, the leading investor and developer on the retail segment in Romania and the most dynamic real estate investor in Central and Eastern Europe, is aligning its entire property portfolio to the BREEAM sustainability standards, including mainly commercial centres and offices in the region.
All evaluated projects have obtained excellent results, thus confirming the company’s focus on respecting the strictest sustainability criteria. In addition to Romania, this process will be further applied on NEPI’s projects in Serbia, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Bulgaria. The certification process will be carried out by BuildGreen.
Shopping City Timisoara is the first NEPI project that obtained the “Excellent” ranking in 2016, according to BREEAM In-Use standards, this being the highest level of certification for an existing building in Romania to this date.
Certifying the commercial centre is part of a long chain of certifications which NEPI is conducting simultaneously, starting from last year and continuing to this very day. The BREEAM evaluation was conducted by BuildGreen, a European sustainability consultancy company that offers advice for the design, development and green certification of buildings.
The certification process will continue in other countries from Central and Eastern Europe where NEPI has a significant portfolio (Serbia, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Bulgaria). In January 2017, the assessment process continued with Promenada and Mega Mall, which obtained the BREEAM Excellent certificate. Also, in the first part of this year, Aurora Mall Buzau, City Park Constanta, Deva Shopping City, Pitesti Retail Park, Ploiesti Shopping City, Severin Shopping City and Sibiu Shopping City obtained the BREEAM Very Good recognition.
With regard to the office properties in the company’s portfolio, Floreasca Business Park and Lakeview managed to obtain the same mark, BREEAM Excellent, alongside Cluj Napoca’s landmark project The Office, which was BREEAM-certified in 2016. Timisoara City Business Centre One (buildings A and B), Timisoara Office Building (building C) and Modatim Business Facility (building D) have also been graded with a “Very Good” ranking.
The BREEAM certification method analyses the buildings that have a reduced environmental impact, according to a set of complex criteria, ranging from the property’s energetic efficiency (reduced water and electricity consumption) to the quality of the indoor environment, the sustainability of the building materials used, waste management, reduced pollution, transportation solutions, the area’s own ecology and the correct management of the properties in line with sustainable development principles.
As the certification scheme has been updated in March 2016, BREEAM criteria have become stricter. “The BREEAM certifications represent a validation of the sustainability initiatives that we have adopted in developing our portfolio”, said Sebastian Mahu, Asset Manager NEPI. “This is only the beginning of a complex, long term project that sees towards integrating advanced sustainability solutions for minimizing the environmental impact and growing the operational efficiency within our projects.”
Razvan Nica, Managing Director BuildGreen, said: “We are proud to contribute to the sustainable certification of NEPI’s portfolio, the first endeavour of such magnitude in Central and Eastern Europe, in which the most dynamic investment company in the region will certificate over 30 properties in six countries. Right from the beginning of this project, we focused on implementing every relevant method for achieving a superior sustainability level. This fact will translate itself in time through lower maintenance costs and significant yearly savings for tenants, but also in a better quality of the building environment. Through the superior results that were obtained, the first certified projects set a standard in each of the markets they are present in and will eventually lead to a more rigorous approach for the entire real estate sector in CEE.”
By opting for this certification method, NEPI confirms its position in durable property development not only through innovation and sustainability, but also through the positive impact on the local community.