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BRE Innovations Park

Posted 1/1/2014

We would like to wish everyone a

Happy New Year from all at 1st  Associated


The BRE (Building Research establishment) Innovations Park

With the world constantly striving to become more energy efficient and hopefully cost effective, we are seeing more and more new construction techniques being used in modern housing. With this in mind we thought we would talk about our day spent at the BRE Innovations Park Watford.


The park was opened in 2005 and showcases some of the world’s most sustainable buildings, with the aim being to reduce our carbon footprint and at the same time improve the standard of construction of the properties and also the quality of health for people living in them.

Cub HouseCub House

There were a number of properties to see and walk around that have been built or renovated to the Code for Sustainable Homes, the highest level being 6.


Cub house

Designed by a former fashion designer the cub house is a modular design home with a steel frame construction. These homes are an extremely quick way of building your own home as they are built off site. The home is fully equipped with bathrooms, kitchen, wiring etc and is then delivered to site more or less ready to move into!!

The cub house is airtight as is needed to meet the level 5 code of sustainability and comes with a heat recovery system which also heats the water and cools the property, large glazed areas, low energy lighting, water saving features and high levels of insulation in the walls.


Victorian terrace

We saw the Victorian terraced stable block where the aim is to make solid wall homes more energy efficient and upgrade its energy performance rating from an F to A/B.


Barrett green home

Built by Barrett Homes this is a level six code home. Barrett aim to incorporate successful elements of this build into their residential new build homes across the country. The house incorporates innovative techniques such as heat recovery system , triple glazing, window shutters, high thermal mass reducing the amount of cooling needed in summer.


Princes natural house

The Princes natural house is a more traditional design of building but has been constructed using natural materials such as clay blocks with an external finish of lime render and roofed with clay tiles. Insulation is provided by way of compressed wood fibre and wool.


Princes Natural HousePrinces Natural House

The Renewable HouseThe Renewable House

If you have an interest in sustainable housing or property in general and are after an interesting and educational day out there are many other buildings to see at the Park including other sustainable houses such as the Sigma House and the Renewable House (see photo).


Other things worth seeing are the visitors centre, the Willmott Dixon Healthcare campus ( originally a sustainable school ) and also the landscape which shows how it can have a positive impact on the buildings within it and also help to  provide a healthier lifestyle for the community living there.  






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