Dunedin Mews is a low energy development comprising 3 x Two Bedroom Apartments in South West London. The modern exterior design is reflected in the advance construction method and technologies employed throughout the build to create leading edge urban homes. At the prestigious London Evening Standard New Homes Awards the project won the award for ‘Best Small Development’.
The previously brownfield site has been transformed with a new development including a Penthouse and two Duplex Apartments each with their own private entrance and allocated parking space. These leading edge urban homes are surrounded by a landscaped amenity space with an attractive pedestrian entrance. In addition to the communal outside space the two Duplex Apartments both benefit from their own private outdoor space.
The development has been certified as achieving Level 3 of the Code for Sustainable Homes by Stroma, ‘Secured by Design’ from the Metropolitan Police and featured in ‘Professional Builder’ Magazine.
At the London Evening Standard New Homes Awards LEATHWAITE received the ‘Best Small Development’ Award for the Dunedin Mews development. The development was described by the judges as ‘punching above it’s weight’ and praised for it’s sustainability, ‘bold contemporary architecture’ and ‘innovative construction methods’.
As a classic urban ‘backfill’ site a creative and unique architectural solution was required to meet the challenges of sensitivity to the close site surroundings, whilst maximising the use of space and light and integrating the sustainable elements such as a green roof. The result is a truly unique building and a bold architectural statement, of a quality not normally associated with this scale of development.
Modern Method of Construction
The building structure is built using a ‘Modern Method of Construction’ known as Insulating Concrete Formwork (ICF). The ICF building system is based on large, hollow, lightweight polystyrene forms that interlock together without glue or mortar to provide a formwork system into which concrete is poured. Once set, the concrete becomes a high strength, air-tight structure. The polystyrene remains in place as insulation, and is finished externally with a high-tech render system.
The ICF structure helps to contribute towards the high performance of the building envelope demonstrated by:-
- Reduced CO2 emissions for the building, achieving one of the mandatory elements of Code Level 3 – a minimum 25% improvement over Building Regulations Part L.
- An Air Permeability test returned results of an average of 3.79 m3/(h*m2) compared to Part L requirement of 10 m3/(h*m2).
- Airborne and impact sound insulation tests results, which were at least 8dB better than Part E minimum standards.
The Insulating Concrete Formwork system used has been awarded an A+ by the BRE under its Green Guide to Specification assessment scheme. The system also produces minimal waste during construction as the waste materials can either be recycled or re-used.
The original brownfield site, which was dominated by hard standing with residential garages, had a low ecological value. The new development includes landscaped grounds and a Bauder Extensive Green ‘Living’ Roof which contributed to a ‘major enhancement’ in the ecological value of the site as independently assessed by an Ecologist.
Code for Sustainable Homes
Dunedin Mews was built to comply with the Code for Sustainable Homes (CSH), an environmental assessment method for rating and certifying the performance of new homes based on BRE Global’sEcoHomes scheme. It was a Government owned national standard intended to encourage continuous improvement in sustainable home building. Dunedin Mews achieved Level 3 of the Code
The covered nine categories of sustainable design:
- Energy and CO2 emissions
- Surface Water Run-off
- Health and Wellbeing
The Code fo Sustainable Homes was wound down by the UK Government in 2014.
Sustainable Timber and Wood
All of the site timber is supplied by Travis Perkins who are registered under both the FSC (Forestry Stewardship Council) and PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) Schemes which ensures that all wood is sourced from legal and sustainably managed forests.
The hard wooden flooring and kitchen worktops are all made from Bamboo rather than traditional hard woods. Bamboo is an environmentally friendly, renewable resource that has been used as a construction material for thousands of years. Ecologically, the harvesting of bamboo does not affect the world’s already dwindling timber resources. Technically considered a grass, bamboo has the ability to grow to maturity in 4-6 years. The intricate root system remains unharmed upon harvesting and allows for sustainable future growth. Using bamboo is a natural alternative to traditional hardwood flooring while at the same time doing something good for the environment.
Low Energy Lighting
The professionally designed external lighting system includes 100% dedicated low energy fittings operated on a dusk-till dawn sensor. More than 75% of internal light fittings are dedicated low energy fittings. (Part L requiring only 35%)
Surface Water Run-off
As the brownfield site was all hard-standing the addition of landscaped grounds and a green roof has reduced the surface water run-off by more than 50%; a positive impact on the local environment.
Mechanical Ventilation and Heat Recovery
Due to the high performance of the building envelope, and in particular air tightness the building does not have a conventional gas boiler and central heating system. Instead each apartment has a dedicated Nilan VP 18 active heat recovery unit for extracting hot, humid air from kitchens, bathrooms and cloakrooms. Dust particles, moisture and smells are thus removed from the dwelling, ensuring a comfortable indoor climate.
The energy recovered from the extracted air is used to provide domestic hot water and to heat the incoming air. The VP 18 also has a cooling system, allowing the unit to cool the incoming air. The energy contained in the incoming air is utilised for water heating before the cooled air is used to ventilate the dwelling. “Free” air cooling is therefore provided whenever the water requires heating.
Secured By Design
LEATHWAITE achieved accreditation from the Metropolitan Police for the Dunedin Mews site against the Secure by Design Initiative. Secured by Design focuses on crime prevention at the design, layout and construction stages of homes and promotes the use of security standards for a wide range of applications and products.
LEATHWAITE consulted with the Metropolitan Police’s local Crime Prevention Design Advisor from the early stages of the project to ensure compliance with the initiative. The advice provided helped drive the design of the development, the selection of suppliers and choice of products to increase the security of the development. The areas covered include:-
- Design of boundary treatments
- Pedestrian entrance gates and door access control, including video door entry.
- External and Security lighting
- Location and design of postal retrieval system.
- Postion and design of secure cycle storage
- All windows and external doors supplied by a Secured by Design accredited supplier and to meet Secured By Design requirements including locking mechanisms, frame design, type of glass etc.
For more details of the Secured by Design initiative click here.