Audley Group, the UK’s leading provider of luxury retirement villages, today announces it has applied for planning permission for its first carbon neutral development as part of a new phase of properties to be built at Audley Inglewood, in Kintbury, Berkshire.
The application is to extend the existing village by building an additional 23 two-bed single storey units within the village’s walled garden. The village currently comprises 91 apartments and two cottages.
Owing to its rural location, Audley Inglewood does not have mains gas, water or drainage, and a variety of sustainable technologies have been employed to meet the energy demands of the existing village. The proposed walled garden scheme design will take this approach even further to create the most sustainable Audley Group development to date by creating a village extension that is self-sufficient in terms of energy consumption.
The vision can be achieved by building highly-insulated, airtight units and generating electricity on-site via roof-mounted photovoltaic panels, which will power high efficient LED lighting and sustainable heating and ventilation systems. Any excess energy can be fed back to the national grid, with a predicted 5% net contribution of carbon offset to the grid.
The team is also evaluating modern methods of construction, including off-site modular systems that will dramatically reduce construction time on site and deliver a higher quality product.
Kevin Shaw, Managing Director, Audley Group, said: “It is in Audley’s DNA to innovate; the very model on which the business is built has set the standard for retirement living so it is natural that we are continuing to redefine the sector by embarking upon a carbon neutral village.
“We have always taken environmental and sustainability issues very seriously and this proposal sends a signal about the scale of our ambition in this space. It is simply not a case of being the responsible approach to construction, it is the only approach that is sustainable over the long term.”
Reflecting Audley’s existing commitment to energy efficient developments the company is also exploring opportunities to move further toward zero carbon status on a number of future projects. This will involve integration of energy efficient and low carbon dwelling design and technologies from day one of the development’s concept discussions, through the design stage and installation to the ongoing operation of the completed development.
The initial driver will be to limit the projected energy demand and associated carbon emissions of a development via building orientation, construction methods, use of low energy materials and equipment, with the integration of low to zero carbon technologies such as natural ventilation, passive solar control, photovoltaic panels, ground source heating, air source air or local district heating schemes together with consideration of carbon offsetting where practical.
Audley Group commissioned architect Gaunt Francis to design the proposed village extension.