Integrated Fitout Benefits
This is an interesting one. I’ve never modelled the benefits of an integrated fit-out before so i’m not sure what the deal is normally or how you assess the GWP benefits.
Below is the project description on how I was planning to run the LCA.
Superstructure walls and frames have been included as part of the construction scope. The reference design includes the material impact of building the full floor for the warm shell fit out and then demolishing for the tenant design, where as the proposed design does not have this negative impact as the voids are built with the base building as part of the integrated fit out.
Is this valid? Are we deviating from the EN15978 standard or GBCA (this is for Green Star) guidance?
Interesting,The voids dont count towards GFA or NLA so I would expect to see a higher area in the reference design if they are saying the voids are not built in. But it sounds like they think the reference design is to build the floors and the dig huge voids in them which doesnt sound very plausible to me.Its good to see collaboration with the actual tenants. Its very common for parts of a fit-out to be included in base build only for a tennant to come in and rip them all out. It sounds unlikely though that a tennant would demolish entire parts of the floor to create a void though??Cheers, Pat
Hi Anon and Pat,
Good discussion, what I do know though is there’s a quirk in the Australian regs and standard office building commissioning work flow. The regs state that for the building to get an occupancy certificate it must be fitted with floor finishes (I think), ceiling and lighting. The standard workflow is:
– Builder completes base building
– Occupancy certificate granted
– Builder gets paid
– Tenants start tenancy fitout (and subsequently tear out most of the ceiling, carpet and lighting.
So there’s legitimacy in the claim (due to the quirk), but as Pat says it has to affect both the GFA and the inventory.
There’s probably a business / sustainability opportunity there to come up with a removable fit-out that can be rolled out so a builder can get their occupancy certificate, but I digress.
My approach would be: Model reference without floor voids, but add these areas to GFA / NLA as fit.
Model Proposed design with the reduced materials but decreased GFA / NLA
My gut feeling is that it would be a marginal benefit (or even net impact when quoted as impacts per GFA or NLA. Green Star uses GFA as the functional unit so need to consider that.
Although this shouldn’t make a lot of difference to the LCA results, I think this assumption doesn´t meet the credit requirements as creating the voids and changing NLA could be considered changes in building scale and function. I´d recommend the client liaising about this with GBCA via a credit interpretation request (CIR).
In case there’s a regulation for the floor to be built to get occupancy permit and then demolished to create the void during fit-out design, I think both base and proposed designs should use the same assumption, and same NLA.
Disagree with Henrique on this one (but that might be my purist LCA for design attitude where I’m just wanting to always reward good design). If this strategy of having shared facilities between floors with stairs is a net benefit I think it should be reflected in the LCA. Some other things to consider:
– Do the floor voids mean that services (toilets and kitchens / dining areas) are smaller per floor because they’re shared between floors?
– Is there a reduction in lift energy due to people using the stairs
– What is the reduction in functionality (eg NLA or GFA) and is it justified?
Providing these are all considered I think applying it in the LCA is valid and I’d encourage it.
But doesn’t that mean that they’ll need to provide some evidence of functional improvement due to the voids? In that case, who makes the call on whether that’s a legit improvement that should be documented in the LCA? And wouldn’t ‘functionality’ also be subjective depending on who’s looking at it? Like having a swiss army chair – but is it really practical?
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