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Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Sustainable real estate. A sharp increase

Since 2005, 280 buildings in France have received the HEQ label, representing 4.5 million m². Of these certifications, 225 were awarded to offices, six to distribution warehouses and three to retail establishments. Today more than 420 buildings are in the process of receiving certification, and 44% of office space delivered in 2008 in Paris Region met the HEQ policy standard for commercial buildings. Paris Region is home to more than half of the buildings certified, with 58 in Hauts-de-Seine (1.7 million m²), 39 in Paris (584,252 m²) and 33 in Seine-Saint-Denis (612,397 m²).
According to the white paper on sustainable real estate produced by DTZ, the number of HEQ-certified commercial buildings in Paris Region with a surface area over 5,000 m² increased six-fold over a period of four years. In 2008, 59 certifications were granted, covering almost 1.3 million m². Production of HEQ-certified space should increase rapidly over the next few years: almost 700,000 m² could be produced in 2009, and 900,000 m² is already planned for 2010. Today, all commercial construction in Paris Region is involved in HEQ certification.
An HEQ operating standard is in the process of being validated. It will be based on four criteria: management, the building’s intrinsic quality, operational quality and environmental quality of company practices. This last element could have an incentive effect on a company's general practices; for example, companies would be encouraged to study alternative means of employee travel.

©atelier Thierry Roche et associés, The "Descartes +", a future example of sustainable real estate in Marne-la-Vallée

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