Havering’s first zero carbon building moves step closer to completion

The borough’s first zero carbon building has moved a step closer to completion this week.

The new ‘my place’ centre in Harold Hill will be Havering’s greenest and one of the few buildings in the UK with a zero carbon rating.

The centre, which is being funded by a by �4m grant from the Big Lottery Fund, will be a community facility for young people.

The youth board, made up of young people in the area, have since designed the building and have been monitoring its progress.

This week all the wooden beams were put into the roof – marking the half-way point for the completion of the project.

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Shelley Smith, project architect for Jacobs, said: “We are currently trying to make the building water-tight, which will take about a month.

“After that we can put in the cables, continue the finishes, plastering the walls, flooring and fittings.”

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The curved roof, which has been made from timber and steel, is currently being covered with insulation along its length.

“This type of building is very rare around the country,” said Mrs Smith. “It is very exciting to be working on it.

“It has been made by young people for young people. The youth board has been very involved in the whole process. I meet with them once a month to tell them about the progress.

“The whole building will be insulated to minimise the energy lost, and there will be solar panels on the roof.

“Any electricity the building uses will be powered by these panels.”

The development of the centre was the result of the Harold Hill Ambitions consultation where residents said they wanted more for young people to do.

The facilities will include a dance and music performance space, a recording studio, a bike workshop, information service, computer suite, a juice bar and caf� and a cr�che.

Its energy efficient features will include natural ventilation, natural day lighting, high insulation levels and solar panels.

All timber used in the construction will be sourced from sustainable certified managed forests.

The building has been designed in the form of a caterpillar, which represents change and development.

It is due to be completed in March, 2012.

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