Retrofitting vital says New London Architecture Advice, UK Building Guide, Homes

Retrofitting vital says New London Architecture (NLA)

19 Nov 2020

A world-leading hub passionate about delivering excellence for the built environment has insisted that the most beneficial way for the City of London to play its part in tackling the climate crisis is to prioritise the retrofitting of existing properties over new-builds. That’s the viewpoint of New London Architecture (NLA) which is passionate about making the English capital a better place to “live, work and visit”.

NLA undertook a survey of 100 companies in the built environment sector and discovered that professionals believed 90% of their work should be focused on retrofitting if the city were to make the biggest possible impact on climate change.

New London Architecture NLA retrofitting guide UK
image : Piqsels

The case for retrofitting over demolition and rebuild

This goes for both commercial and residential buildings, which could help create safer, more carbon-neutral environments to work and live from existing structures. With average deposits required for new-builds in the capital coming in at over 25%, prospective buyers may look to retrofitted older properties as a means of bagging a bargain. As property prices rise and the number of mortgage products dwindles, mortgage comparison tools like Trussle’s portal have become an essential companion for savvy first-time buyers in the London property market, with the ability to compare up to 90 lenders to get the lowest available rates at the cheapest true cost of the product. The site also offers various guides and other tools to support you with your mortgage queries.

The NLA’s latest survey was part of the organisation’s ‘Road to Net Zero by 2050’ report. The document was somewhat scathing of the government’s approach to achieving its net-zero commitment, which is now legally binding. The majority (85%) of companies surveyed in the built environment sector were adamant that the country’s existing regulatory framework and policies were “incompatible” with the end goal.

In fact, just over a third (34%) of professionals surveyed were confident that the capital would meet its net-zero obligations by 2050. The figure was even lower for the UK as a whole, with just over a fifth (22%) of built environment experts demonstrating confidence in the industry’s ability to adapt in the next 30 years.

NLA puts its name to AJ’s RetroFirst campaign

Retrofitting vital says New London Architecture
image :

As a consequence of the report, NLA has joined a host of professional organisations in putting its name to Architects Journal’s ‘RetroFirst’ campaign – a movement supported by the likes of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and the UK Green Building Council, passionate about retrofitting over demolitions and rebuilds.

Catherine Staniland, Director, NLA, insists her organisation’s survey demonstrates the very real “risk” that London faces in “falling off track” unless “national policies and regulations fully align” with the government’s ambitious targets. Meanwhile, Ashley Bateson, Chair of the NLA’s net-zero professional panel, believes the rising number of built environment experts wanting to see a “faster transition to net zero” in “existing buildings” as well as “new buildings” was “encouraging”.

The NLA’s Road to Net Zero by 2050 report was published to coincide with London Climate Action Week. The seven-day campaign is designed to provide design inspiration in the form of masterplans, infrastructure, and toolkits to “support London’s transition to a low-carbon city”.

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