Green Lab: sustainability innovation
Green Lab is our cross-functional innovation hub for sustainability. The lab was created to identify new sustainability initiatives and test and roll out ideas to address the pressing environmental challenges that will face our shopping centres in coming decades.
One of the initiatives we have been trialling this year is the application of Bioregional’s One Planet principles in different areas of our business, looking at ways to make sustainable choices available to our customers and staff and in our fit-out guidance for retailers.
We decided to trial the application of the One Planet principles in the redevelopment of intu Broadmarsh. In November 2017, we held a workshop led by Bioregional where intu development experts explored each of the 10 One Planet principles and what opportunities exist to achieve them in the redevelopment. The workshop looked at potential benefits, the feasibility and the key challenges associated with its implementation.
There were five of the principles we felt could be most successfully incorporated into the design and planning of intu Broadmarsh: health and happiness; culture and community; land and nature, local and sustainable food; and sustainable water. These include initiatives such as increased indoor planting and biophilic design, healthy food options for our contractors and turning unused space adjoining the centre into community space which would increase the health and wellbeing potential of the development.
Providing sustainable options for customers and tenants was identified as a material issue in our 2016 materiality assessment. Through Green Lab we are exploring new initiatives such as providing recycling facilities for our customers in Spain, offering more sustainable travel options and looking at how we can reduce the use of single-use plastics. We have already replaced all single-use plastics with sustainable options at 40 Broadway.
Sustainable fit-out guides
We have included the One Planet principles in our fit-out guides to engage retailers with the principles and get feedback on where they are already applying them in their store fit-outs. We aim to create a sustainability category in our 2018 retailer awards.
We are delighted to be working with intu to create a more sustainable and compelling shopping experience. We are excited by the initial steps taken for intu Broadmarsh, and look forward to embedding the approach more widely.
Head of sustainable places, Bioregional