“We no longer get an afternoon slump,” Delia Batt sums up her experience working every day in the new office, laughing. Batt is an associate at the British real estate consultancy Gerald Eve, and is a member of the companies ESG steering group. Since June 2022, she and 400 of her colleagues have been working in new accommodation in the chic heart of the London West End. Open-plan offices, meeting rooms, a library and client lounge are spread over two floors. Good air rounds off the broad-minded, modern ambiance and has contributed to a reduction in employees afternoon fatigue.
Three questions about air quality
Before moving to the newly renovated space in the pioneering building One Fitzroy, built in 2015, the company had three questions on its agenda, which were also linked to the quality of the air in the rooms.
400 colleagues are working in the new accommodation in the chic heart of the London West End. (Photo | Andrea Artz)
Delia Batt appreciates the good, productive working atmosphere. (Photo: Andrea Artz | Fotogloria)
Tom Marshall (left) leads the sustainability strategy at Gerald Eve - and sees air quality as a key factor for satisfied employees. Tony Wright from ebm-papst neo implemented the RESET certification in Gerald Eve's chic new London office. (Photo: Andrea Artz | Fotogloria)
How can I get my workforce back into the office to work together after working from home during the pandemic? How can the climate of the new office also promote health and well-being in general? And how do I monitor the air quality to meet the requirements of the BREEAM and Fitwel sustainability certificates?
From order to certification in no time at all
Tony Wright, Divisional Director & Head of UK Sales – Digital Solutions ebm-papst, was asked for advice and provided answers to these questions: “We suggested certification by RESET.” This international air quality standard involves continuous real-time measurement of the air. Wright and his team studied the building plans, identified the optimum positions for the sensors and agreed the plan with RESET. Nine sensors across both floors now continuously measure CO2 content, temperature, relative humidity, total volatile organic compounds and particulate matter (PM2.5). The data is delivered to a platform, which forwards it to RESET.
“It’s simply a good feeling to know that you are breathing in good air throughout the day!” Tom Marshall – Partner at Gerald Eve
“Since we implemented the plan during the renovation, we were able to simply lay Ethernet cables to the sensors, which also take care of the power supply,” explains Wright. This was an ideal solution in three ways: Only one cable is required for data and power. Unlike a USB-C supply, which is commonly used, employees are not tempted to quickly charge their cell phones, which deactivates the sensors. And finally, the integrated cables are also the most visually clean implementation. They simply look like stylish, unobtrusive light switches on the wall.
Find the sensor! The inconspicuous air meters blend into the interior like a light switch. (Photo: Andrea Arzt | Fotogloria)
Always knowing what's going on in the air: Tony Wright and Delia Batt take a look at the sensor data. (Photo: Andrea Artz | Fotogloria)
The data from the IAQ sensors can also be easily accessed via smartphone. (Photo: Andrea Artz | Fotogloria)
After the sensors were approved, the three-month certification process began in June 2022, during which time the system detects whether the IAQ parameters were permanently within a defined range. In total, the project took just four and a half months from receiving the order to certification. “Introducing RESET is one of the simplest and most cost-effective ways to increase air quality in rooms,” says Tony Wright with confidence. If the sensors register the deterioration of a parameter, Facility Management is responsible for remedying the problem. Deborah McVerry, who leads the FM team comments: “Short-term deviations may indicate that a ventilation unit has failed. A long-term downward trend can be attributed to maintenance, cleanliness or filter problems. We are then able to raise issues with the building management team for resolution in a timely manner.”
Good air makes a good impression
Gerald Eve can tell the workforce about the measured values. “It’s simply a good feeling to know that you are breathing in good air throughout the day,” says Tom Marshall, who leads the environmental strategy at Gerald Eve. “The well-being and health of our employees is key to Gerald Eve. A healthy environment not only avoids fatigue and other direct problems, but it also prevents long-term illnesses.” Having reliable data with RESET to achieve this objective not only brings advantages for Gerald Eve in house: “As a real estate consultant it is important that we really live the values that we promote and represent. Good air makes good sense for our colleagues, clients and visitors.”
The RESET standard
RESET offers the world’s first sensor-based building standard for indoor spaces. The standard monitors, communicates and certifies the air quality in buildings. Sensors record various air quality parameters: temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide content, fine dust (PM2.5) and TVOC. To ensure the accuracy of the recorded data, RESET specifies strict requirements for the precision of the sensors and the data transmission type. ebm-papst works with RESET and provides customers with advice and implementation from certified staff. Here you can find further information.
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