Circular Economy

This warehouse is one of the world’s greenest industrial buildings

"The Tube" outside the city of Tilburg Image: Rhenus

Rosamond Hutt
Senior Writer, Forum Agenda
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Circular Economy

This article is part of: Sustainable Development Impact Summit

With its futuristic curved design and daylight-infused interior it doesn’t look like a typical warehouse.

But the NewLogic III building, an office and warehouse space on the outskirts of the Dutch city of Tilburg, not only boasts a sleek exterior, it has stellar green credentials.

Judged one of the most sustainable industrial buildings in the world, its environmentally friendly features include solar panels that feed surplus energy into the grid, and toilets that flush with rainwater collected from the roof.

Triple-glazed windows and extra insulation help keep the building airtight. Image: TRILUX

The building – nicknamed “The Tube” because of its cylindrical design – is the Netherlands head office and distribution centre for multinational logistics company Rhenus.

This year it received the highest rating ever for a distribution centre from BREEAM (British Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method), which rates buildings’ sustainability.

BREEAM, which has assessed more than 569,000 buildings in 83 countries, gave NewLogic III a score of 99.48%.

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Green by design

The 60,500m² warehouse and office space is airtight with extra insulation. A photovoltaic system on the roof consisting of 11,620 solar panels generates more electricity than the building consumes, with excess power going into the grid, meaning it is both energy and CO2 neutral.

Natural light flooding through large triple-glazed windows reduces the amount of electricity needed for lighting and makes it a more pleasant space to work in.

The building also features a heat pump, automatically dimming LED lighting, charging points for electric vehicles and technology that monitors water consumption and CO2 concentrations.

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The Netherlands is building a reputation for sustainable architecture. The Edge, Deloitte Netherlands’ location in Amsterdam, has been hailed as the world’s greenest office space, achieving the highest BREEAM score in its category.

Cities going circular

The Tube and The Edge are examples of a broader trend as designers and urban planners try to build greener, more sustainable buildings and cities.

Whether it be using materials from abandoned buildings when constructing new ones or reducing energy consumption, numerous projects around the world are embracing the concept of the circular economy.

These projects aim to eliminate waste, and reduce, reuse and recycle where possible, to safeguard the environment.

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The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum.

Related topics:
Circular EconomySustainable DevelopmentHealth and Healthcare Systems
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