NEWS

The Greenest Baltics Shopping Centre in Lithuania

2019-08-27

BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) final certificate issued to 6.5 M euro worth shopping and service centre “Žali”, which has been operating for the past year in Balsiai micro-district of Vilnius.

According to Audrius Masionis, the director of “Žali” developer and manager Baltisches Haus, UAB, this is the first building in the Baltic States with BREEAM rating “very good” awarded in accordance with BREEAM New Construction certification scheme in the commercial real estate segment.

Pollution reduced by new projects

“In the European Union, on average, buildings consume 40% of energy and generate approx. 36% of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions making them one of the biggest consumers of energy. Understanding the challenges posed by the climate crisis, underestimated impact of buildings to the environment and our responsibility, we have been purposefully pursuing the goal of building high-energy class, sustainable shopping centre in Lithuania. The fact that in this respect the building is unique in the Baltic States as well was a nice additional plus”, – A. Masionis tells.

It is estimated that one third of buildings in EU are older than 50 years with low renovation rate, which, depending on the country, is 0.4–1.2% per year. So far, new buildings, in particular, have the greatest potential for reducing climate impact.

“It is particularly important to us that the experts awarded the highest rating to the pollution control, waste management and sustainable energy aspects of the shopping centre “Žali” since these aspects are critical to the sustainability of the building. Although such a building, including landscaping thereof, requires more investments than traditional buildings, our goal is to change the attitude and determine a higher quality standard, as we believe this is the shopping centre of the future”, – A. Masionis argues.

People- and eco-friendly

Urbanized environments, reduced green spaces, additional noise and traffic flows – this is how residents imagine the neighbourhood of the shopping centre. However, the exterior of the shopping centre “Žali”, which uses geothermal energy, is heavily planted, thus noise emissions were reduced to a minimum.

“Complicated complex engineering solutions have made it possible to create social infrastructure that was necessary to the local community and ensure a friendly neighbourhood. The noise from the shopping centre is minimal, which is very important not only to people living in the neighbourhood but also to the wildlife. In principal, each new building has an impact on the environment, however, it is obvious that the impact may be completely minimised. This is the matter of the attitude of a real estate developer”, – A. Masionis tells.

The investment of Baltisches Haus to the shopping centre was approx. 6.5 M euro, of which 4.6 M euro were invested in the store. The shopping centre “Žali” also has electric car charging stations, promotes car sharing service. In addition, near the shopping centre, new public transportation stations are built, including paths for the disabled, which connect the building with public transportation infrastructure, cycle paths and additional facilities for the cyclist are expanded or extended.

Shopping centre “Žali” project was implemented together with IKI, Eikos statyba, Baltic Engineers, JP Architektūra, COWI, EE plius, Viaprojektas, AGA CAD, Akustika plius, Senasis ežerėlis and other partners.

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