Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership

Project team


University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainable Leadership




The Project

As part of a multi-disciplinary design team, we are providing wellness and sustainability consulting for the ultra-low carbon retrofit of a 1930s building set to become the new offices and headquarters for the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL). The project has a challenging sustainability brief, targeting BREEAM Outstanding, WELL Gold, and Passivehaus EnerPHit certification, as well as a requirement for a circular economy office, all balanced with the need to retain the special character of the building due to its location within the central Cambridge Conservation Area.

The Entopia Building, as it is now called, will set new standards for low energy use, carbon emissions and impact on natural resources as well as user experience and wellbeing measured against multiple benchmarks. This international exemplar for sustainable office retrofits demonstrates how an existing office building can be made highly energy efficient in its redevelopment and use, whilst supporting the enhanced wellbeing of staff and visitors.

Building occupants will benefit from design strategies informed by thermal comfort, acoustics and daylight modelling. Passivehaus principles include the maximization of daylight and enhanced indoor air quality, while all material specifications were informed by BREEAM and WELL certification. Wellbeing is also supported by access to an external roof terrace and lightwell courtyard, biophilia and combined first aid/nursing room for new mothers.

The team continues to work with CISL to adapt their policies and operational practices to ensure the final occupied building continues to promote the core principles of the WELL Standard.

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