The greenest building is the one that already exists
“We cannot meet our climate objectives without a major improvement in the existing built stock” The Committee on Climate Change
“The greenest building is the one that already exists” Carl Elefante, former president of the American Institute of Architects
Following their successful work at 170 – 175 High Street West, Tyne & Wear Building Preservation Trust (twbpt.org.uk) have chosen to extend their remit to include an adjacent city block - 177 High Street West and 1-2 Villers Street. Whilst not listed, the building is a part of the remaining historic grain of this neighbourhood and is the last redundant building in the Conservation Area that is considered 'at risk'. Subject to extensive alteration and left to deteriorate due to a lack of an identified use, it may appear on initial view that there is little of architectural merit visible but the building does have qualities that this scheme looks to redefine. TWBPT see this as an opportunity to show what difference can be made through repair and restoration, and as a catalyst for the regeneration of the empty site between Villiers and Nile Street..
‘’The longer a building and its component parts last, the less embodied carbon is expended over the life of the building. Repair and maintenance can reduce building obsolescence and increase the life spans of buildings’ Re-use and Recycle to Reduce Carbon (historicengland.org.uk)
This is at the core of what the Trust do, and we are proud to be support them in their aim for this small but challenging project. The works will retain as much existing fabric as possible through repair. It will improve thermal performance of the building fabric and re-introduce traditional shopfronts that will add interest to the streetscape and bring greater community pride and ownership. The project sits at the forefront of the regeneration plans for this neighbourhood and is an exciting step forward.