Revolution in healthcare: The first NHS Passivhaus building

Tooley Foster secures sustainability status for Foleshill Health Centre, Coventry

The new Foleshill Health Centre is one of the greenest healthcare facilities in the UK

Architect, Tooley Foster, has made history, having been granted certification for the UK’s first Passivhaus health centre.

The opening of Foleshill Health Centre in August this year followed four years of analysis and research by Tooley Foster, AECOM, and Community Health Partnerships to establish the financial and health benefits of Passivhaus standards for medical buildings.

With NHS estates currently contributing 5% to England’s carbon footprint, the project demonstrates how Passivhaus technology can save money and help the NHS in its ambition to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2040.

On site for just 25 weeks, and with every aspect tightly controlled and budgeted for; the Foleshill project used modular construction to keep site costs down and illustrates how factory production is no barrier to high-end, Passivhaus certification.

The building will now be used as an exemplar of good practice within the NHS.

And data will continue to be collected and analysed over the next few years, providing additional evidence for investment in Passivhaus by the NHS as we near the 2040 net-zero target date.

The building has been constructed to Passivhaus sustainability standards

What is Passivhaus?

Passivhaus is the leading international low-energy design standard.

Passivhaus buildings provide a high level of occupant comfort while using very little energy for heating and cooling.

They are built with meticulous attention to detail and rigorous design and construction according to principles developed by the Passivhaus Institute in Germany and are certified via an exacting independent quality assurance process.

Lee Connolly, head of project design and engineering at Portakabin, said: “This pilot project pushed the boundaries of offsite construction within the public sector as well as the perceptions of that which can be achieved with Modern Methods of Construction (MMC).

“Foleshill is showcasing the flexibility of MMC and is a bold and brave step toward creating a legacy of buildings that will help the construction industry proactively tackle climate change.”

Dr Sarah Raistrick, chairman of NHS Coventry and Warwickshire Clinical Commissioning Group, added: “We were really excited to see patients move into this fantastic, efficient modular build.

“The services provided from this building will ensure we continue to provide high-quality, safe and effective care for the local residents of Foleshill.”

The reception area in the new building

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Portakabin (more information, website)

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