Deloitte’s office becomes world’s highest scoring BREEAM refurb project

Deloitte’s office becomes world’s highest scoring BREEAM refurb project

Consolidating its London campus with a new head office, it challenged traditional ‘green building’ thinking to deliver a workplace to benefit people and planet.


Deloitte moved into a new office at 1 New Street in London, and took the opportunity to create a future-facing workplace. It features a suite of innovative environmental features and is carefully designed to offer an environment that supports employee wellbeing. This project gained a BREEAM rating of Outstanding, and was the highest scoring BREEAM Refurbishment and Fit-out 2014 project ever.


Deloitte LLP is a professional services firm with 18,000 colleagues around the UK and Switzerland.


Deloitte’s stated purpose is “to make an impact that matters”. When the once-in-a-decade opportunity arose to consolidate part of its central London campus within a new 280,000ft2 head office, it saw the potential. Deloitte wanted to challenge traditional ‘green building’ thinking and deliver a workplace that would truly benefit people and planet.

It also recognised that a truly sustainable building was one that would go further and enhance the health, wellbeing and comfort of occupants. These concepts aligned with the company’s long-standing talent strategy so by targeting WELL Gold – and aiming to become the largest WELL Gold certified office fit-out in the world – it not only worked to ensure the workspace would improve staff productivity, satisfaction and ability to collaborate; but also to create an even stronger business case for delivering better buildings.


It was a complex brief. Across 15 floors, the building needed to provide 2,000 core and 1,500 flexible working positions for 5,500 agile colleagues. Deloitte needed to consolidate all the client spaces across the campus within a range of formal, informal and innovative collaboration spaces; provide cafés, restaurants and a fine-dining suite; and offer a mix of amenity and wellness spaces. Spaces were to be connected through 13 newly created accommodation stairs and 2 pedestrian bridges that would encourage movement and collaboration through and between the campus; and of course the project needed to deliver on world-leading sustainability aspirations.


The success of the project was built on early engagement. From the very start, Deloitte leadership bought into the business case for occupying a healthy, efficient and sustainable workplace. Due diligence identified 1 New Street Square as the building with the most potential to deliver on the client’s sustainability aspirations to create a ‘campus of the future’. It engaged the developer to effect base-build modifications and appointed a design team highly motivated to challenge the norms.

The team undertook extensive stakeholder consultation with colleagues including holding focus groups, running an “awareness week”, issuing staff surveys and creating a social media presence. Throughout, it used BREEAM and WELL as engagement tools to understand how these agenda could best come together to create an efficient, inspiring, user-centric workspace. The team was also able to generate support for concepts slightly outside of these assessments, such as the importance of biophilic design as a tool for improving mindfulness and productivity.

Managing two distinctive design schemes was a complex process. BRE helped the project team navigate some of this through their forward-thinking partnership with the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI). Their efforts collaborating on the Crosswalk programme were immensely valuable and enabled Deloitte to provide clear, practical advice to the design team in support of its environmental and wellbeing agendas.

Through the extensive efforts of design, construction and supply chain partners, the team was able to balance the needs of the people and the business, and deliver a workplace that is clean, efficient and sustainable. The project became the first office fit-out in the world to attain BREEAM Outstanding and WELL Gold dual-certification. Deloitte’s efforts have demonstrated to the real estate industry that environmental sustainability and user centric design can go hand-in-hand, creating spaces that work for people and planet, now and in the future.

Overview of environmental features

Deloitte is committed to playing its part in the transition to a low carbon economy. Since it started its corporate sustainability programme in 2011, its building-related emissions have dropped 72% per employee. The move to 1 New Street Square offered a chance to go further and inspire the industry by demonstrating there is real value in delivering better buildings.

The fit-out attained almost perfect scores for energy use (99%) through aspects ranging from mandating all lights to be LED to the highly efficient controls strategy, and water efficiency (100%) thanks to a greywater system and flow-restriction devices. Some of the more innovative environmental features include:

  • Using performance based design to prioritise energy efficiency and comfort. Lifecycle assessments helped to demonstrate the long-term value of sustainable investments; an operational energy model to inform energy efficient design and procurement; and thermal, acoustic, daylight and an innovative circadian lighting model to ensure the working environment would achieve optimum comfort levels while remaining highly efficient.

  • To minimise the performance gap between design and operation, a Soft Landings process was undertaken, contracted for extended commissioning support. It will review performance over a multi-year post-occupancy evaluation period, feeding findings back into the client’s corporate real estate strategy for future fit-outs.

  • An Intelligent Building Management System, for which the client received an innovation credit, will enable it to adopt a more proactive rather than reactive approach to operational maintenance. It will also improve the efficiency of process and eliminate unnecessary maintenance and associated transport emissions from operatives coming to site.

  • 620 indoor environmental quality sensors to monitor and optimise environmental conditions (CO2, particulates, VOCs, ozone, temperature, noise and light levels) within the building. These link back to the Intelligent Building network to dynamically adjust air-flow rates, maintaining an optimal balance between comfort performance and energy consumption.

  • Designed for flexibility from establishing pre-engineered zones of MEP services and IT/AV around the core with moveable partitions that could be readily dismantled. This approach offers flexibility to adapt to changing working practices in the future, without the need for intrusive work and associated waste production.

  • Dedicated workshops with the design and contractor teams to inspire creative ways to minimise construction waste. It simplified the design, used prefabricated elements to minimise off-cuts and established takeback schemes to return packaging and unused construction materials.

  • To encourage sustainable commuting, Deloitte provided 27% more cycle spaces than were required by BREEAM. The Principal Contractor also supported this idea by incentivising its operatives to cycle to work, providing cyclists with changing facilities and subsidised lunch vouchers.

The focus on environmental design also enabled the client to use the project as a catalyst to drive internal sustainability initiatives, such as:

  • Ensuring all redundant office furniture (5,000 desks/3,500 chairs) from the vacated offices were donated to good causes or recycled, with nothing going to landfill.

  • Installing 40 “Surface Hub” video-conferencing units in 1 New Street Square to give people viable alternatives to travel.

  • Distributing 17,000 KeepCups and water bottles across the firm to remove single-use plastic and paper cups from vending areas.

  • Ensuring all service contracts support environmental sustainability, from mandating zero operational waste to landfill, to procuring green tariff electricity.

Wellbeing design

Deloitte wanted to occupy a truly sustainable workplace. This meant considering the people that will use the space and the community that it will create. In delivering a wellbeing agenda alongside our environmental one, this project became truly innovative. Some of the more interesting wellbeing features included:

  • Enhancing air quality by designing outsources of air pollution from construction materials, furniture and equipment; and working with the Facilities provider to ensure operational cleaning and maintenance regimes used low-toxicity products. In addition to creating a better environment for people, these efforts have had a positive impact on the industry with over 200 material, furniture and cleaning suppliers assessing their products against stringent air quality and environmental criteria.

  • Improving mindfulness through biophilic design. 6,300 plants were installed in 700 displays, 140m2 of green walls and significant use of timber and stone. The client also provided access to nature through the 12th floor terrace; views out; and opportunities for downtime in spaces including a dedicated social area and “The Retreat”, a tech-free relaxation room

  • Promoting activity by undertaking structural alterations to the base-build to create 13 attractive, internal accommodation stairs; procuring 600 sit/stand desks; and creating a new 365-bay cycle facility and 1,100m2 gym on campus

  • Encouraging nutrition and hydration by working with partners to provide healthier foods in the restaurant (serving ~75,000 meals/year); subsidised fruit; and taps that provide chilled, filtered water in vending areas.


Deloitte believes BREEAM is the leading assessment method for delivering sustainable buildings as it is globally recognised and takes a holistic view of sustainability. BREEAM also helps the client clearly articulate the business benefits, from driving lower operational costs to enhancing the brand. It has a wide-ranging corporate sustainability agenda aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals and has traditionally targeted BREEAM Excellent certification on office fit-outs in support of this. As the new office was to be exemplary, it wanted to make a statement, so targeted BREEAM Outstanding and aspired to attain the highest 2014 RFO score ever awarded.

This building has been recognised with several accolades, including:

  • Shortlisted for EDIE “Mission Possible” Built Environment Award 2019 (winner to be announced in February 2019).

  • Shortlisted for BCO “Fitout of Workplace” Award 2019 (winner to be announced in October 2019).

“We are incredibly proud of the precedent we have set through our world-leading sustainability and wellbeing agenda. To attain the highest BREEAM 2014 fit-out score ever, and be the first dual-certified BREEAM/WELL Gold fit-out in the world is hugely inspirational and a testament to everyone’s efforts.”
– — David Sproul, senior partner and CEO of Deloitte North West Europe

Summary Deloitte Office Highest Scoring Breeam Refurb


London, UK
Overbury PLC
Hoare Lea LLP
Refurbishment and Fit-Out 2014
BREEAM rating:
Outstanding (93.6%)

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