Two of the ten greenest office buildings in the world are located in Prague, the same number as in all of the United States. According to available information, the highest rated projects within the LEED v3 Core & Shell certification included the complex Praga Studios in Karlín and Visionary in Holešovice, both developed by Skanska. Europe is generally at the top of the list of sustainable buildings. In terms of cities, only Bucharest got ahead of Prague; since last year it boasts three buildings in the top ten.
Out of the top ten buildings in the 2009 Core & Shell category under LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification, the most widespread global valuation system for sustainable buildings, seven are in Europe. Only two are surprisingly in the United States and one is in Brazil.
Two places in the top ten belong to office complexes developed and built by Skanska in Prague. In shared fourth place with currently 97 points we can find Karlín’s Praga Studios, completed last year. Last in the ranking are then three buildings sharing 6th place, including Visionary in Holešovice.
“LEED certification at Platinum level is the standard of all buildings that Skanska has completed in the Czech Republic in the last six years. We are very proud that our Czech projects rank among the first places on the list of sustainable buildings not only regionally, but also on a global level. This proves that we are pushing the boundaries of technical solutions as part of our development activities in Prague, which ultimately benefits not only building’s tenants, but the whole city,” says Alexandra Tomášková, Executive Vice President of Commercial Development for Hungary and the Czech Republic.
Daylight, rainwater and energy saving
Visionary became the greenest office building in Central and Eastern Europe at the time of its approval in 2018. The authors of the project from the Jakub Cigler Architekti studio used the best of the current trends in modern construction. Thanks to its glass façade, for example, the building takes full advantage of natural daylight. All parking spaces are located underground to reduce the formation of thermal islands in the city, and unnecessary taxiing is eliminated by an intelligent parking system.
This system also serves tenants at Praga Studios. Both buildings are extraordinarily environmentally-friendly. They only use green energy from renewable sources, which is also positively reflected in the carbon footprint of the building operation, and its savings are more than 40 percent thanks to innovative technical solutions such as efficient LED lighting with occupancy and motion sensors. Drinking water, the consumption of which has been reduced by approximately 40 percent, is also managed economically, among other things thanks to the capture of rainwater, which is subsequently used to irrigate the garden and green roof.
The greenest building is in Barcelona
At the time of its certification in November last year, Praga Studios was the third greenest building in the world. Just two weeks later, however, other projects in Bucharest were certified and moved it to a shared fourth place. A total of three local buildings named Business Garden Bucharest Building A, B and C ranked among the top ten. With three projects, Bucharest is the most represented metropolis in the top ten and has surpassed, for example, the whole of United States.
Since June 2019, PLATINUM-BCN in Barcelona is the best-rated complex and boasts the title of the world’s greenest office building. The complex gained 101 points within the certification. Among other things, the authors achieved 44% energy savings and a 46% reduction in water consumption. They used solar power and a geothermal energy capture system.
All the buildings that Skanska has completed in the Czech Republic in the last six years have been successfully LEED certified. The City Green Court project was the first to receive certification in 2012, with a total of 83 points. Gradually, other projects followed in addition to those already mentioned, such as Corso Court or Five. Over the years, Skanska has gradually been raising the bar, which has so far reached 97 points with the project Praga Studios.