Faithful+Gould project wins double award at Wales RICS Awards

Rhian Williams
Following on from its win at the Constructing Excellence Awards last year, Swansea University’s Active Classroom has been awarded the Design through Innovation Award, as well as the prestigious overall Project of the Year Award at the Wales Regional RICS Awards, which were held in Cardiff last night.

Based at Swansea University’s Bay Campus, the state of the art Active Classroom generates electricity by solar cells which are integrated into the steel roof. It is connected to two Aquion Energy saltwater batteries, which can store enough energy to power the building for up to two days. It is the first time they are being used in the UK.

More specifically, to generate the solar heat energy, the Classroom uses Tata Steel’s perforated steel cladding which can be stored in a water-based system and an electrically-heated floor coating which was developed by Swansea University’s SPECIFIC Innovation and Knowledge Centre researchers.

‌‌Throughout the world, buildings are responsible for almost half of the UK’s CO2 emissions and the Active Classroom is an excellent example of a solution to this problem.

The Classroom provides Swansea University students with teaching and laboratory space, as well as a building facility for SPECIFIC and its industry partners.

All the regional winners will be shortlisted for the National RICS Awards which will take place later in London later in the year.

Ceri Jones, Project Director at SNC-Lavalin Faithful+Gould’s business said “We are thrilled to have had the opportunity to provide our client, SPECIFIC, with cost advice on this cutting-edge project which has been recognised for its highly innovative qualities. Our ability to learn from the Active Classroom is tremendous and I’m sure this project will pave the way for others to deliver energy efficient projects as part of the buildings as power stations initiatives.”

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