Blog: SECBE Awards 2022 finalist - Dinton Activity Centre

11 April 2022

Net Zero sponsored by Willmott Dixon

Dinton Activity Centre (submitted by HLM Architects)

Net Zero Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards 2022 finalist

The new £2.4m scheme provides a state-of-the-art educational and leisure facility for the local community which sits in lakeside surroundings in Dinton Country Park. The design of the building takes inspiration from its setting and is designed in its scale and appearance to connect with its location by having two interlinked volumes clad in Siberian larch that will weather over time to blend in with the natural landscape.

The centre is Net Zero Carbon, with several eco-friendly benefits including windcatchers, photovoltaic panels on the roof and air source heat pumps which will significantly reduce the centre’s overall energy demand.

The new centre will be a modern, fit-for-purpose replacement of the current venue that places the community’s needs at the front and centre. HLM Architects have worked closely with the centre’s leadership team and other key community stakeholders to provide a design that celebrates the nearby natural surroundings while creating a sense of place and having a positive impact on future users.

Following the project’s success in delivering operational Net Zero Carbon, the centre is being used as a case study for how local authorities across the country can successfully develop Net Zero Carbon buildings.

The Centre has committed to monitor all of its energy use in addition the following KPI’s:

• Energy Use Intensity (EUI) targets

• Embodied carbon targets

• Have fossil free heating and hot water and use the heat decision tree to select systems

• Develop a demand response strategy and implement design measures and active measures to reduce electrical grid demand. Extensive monitoring of energy usage is proposed alongside on site energy generation to reduce reliance on grid.

• Provide enough on-site and off-site renewable generation to achieve a zero carbon balance.

Key achievements:

  • First operationally Net Zero Carbon building within Wokingham Borough Council’s portfolio.
  • Close collaboration between Architect, Client (WBC), and modular contractor being used as a case study of successful project delivery of an MMC, NZCop building for a local authority.
  • A stunning building that compliments and enhances its natural environment.

  • Client: Wokingham Borough Council
  • Project partners: HLM Architects, Reds10, RCDC, Delap & Waller, Apteriors, Design ID, Faithful+Gould

Find more about HLM Architects

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Find out who wins at the Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards 2022 Ceremony on Thurs 30th June 2022.


About the Net Zero Award (sponsored by Willmott Dixon): 

High environmental and climate performance in construction aims to meet present day needs for housing, working environments and infrastructure without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs in times to come. It seeks to limit impact on the natural environment and demonstrate whole life sustainability. It is most effective when organisational culture, high design quality, technical innovation and transferability are abundant. More info

>> Find out more about the other Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards finalists here

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