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Adaptive Reuse, Issue #2: A Path to Carbon Neutrality

March 02, 2021

As the UK plans for a low-carbon future, the reuse of existing buildings will be essential for achieving sustainability targets. Preserving structures can also lead to a significant reduction in construction costs, with further savings possible through incentives and as carbon taxes rise. In the second installment of our discussion series on adaptive reuse, we look at applying concepts of the circular economy to the built environment, using life cycle assessments to measure a building’s carbon footprint, and how façade replacements can provide an economical and energy-efficient alternative to new builds. An example of the successful implementation of many of these methods is Hobhouse, a Thornton Tomasetti structural engineering and façade design project in Central London. Conceived in 2013, the complex refurbishment and new building project, which includes two Grade II listed buildings, outperformed LETI’s proposed 2020 embodied carbon targets.