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Top 5 Most Sustainable Buildings in Leeds 

by Nathan Swinson-Bullough

Sustainability is everything right now, the climate doomsday clock is just under 7 years now! Meaning we must achieve carbon neutrality within that time or else! Now, enough of the fearmongering, time to shine a light on some of the best examples of sustainable developments, located in our very own back garden, Leeds.

Citu’s Climate Innovation District

We couldn’t make this list without starting out with one of the most sustainable developments in the UK. This example isn’t even one standalone building, it’s a series of housing structures designed to be as ultra-sustainable as possible. Citu even won Sunday Times British Home’s Award for the ‘Best Sustainable Development in the UK’.

Use of the latest sustainable technologies, such as off-site timber frame construction, MVHR systems for recycling heat, air-tight membranes and more, allowed Citu to create homes that will be powered by 100% renewable energy, drastically reducing the carbon footprints of the residents.

We had a part to play in Citu’s development in the centre of Leeds, as we produced hoardings to both advertise and keep the development secure. You can read the case study here.


Recycling and Energy Recovery Facility

The Recycling and Energy Recovery Facility is designed to remove and sort recyclables before the combustion process. This state-of-the-art technology is a safe and efficient way of treating residual black bin waste. The facility features on of the largest green walls in existence, the 42m façade traps carbon omitted by the building reducing its carbon output and helping towards its net zero ambitions. Internationally renowned architect, Jean-Robert Mazaud of S’pace Architects designed the building to have as much natural light as possible enter through the roof and through the walls, the heat the space without using external contributors.

The Green Building, Thorpe Park

Constructed by CMI for Innovate Property, the 46,000 sq ft facility achieved an ‘Excellent’ BREEAM rating, which measures sustainability, of 87.55%. The highest of any building in the country at the time of construction. The office is a 3-storey pre-cast centre, with two 14-metre-wide wings either side of a full height glass atrium. The objective of this prototype was the UK’s first commercially developed sustainable office.

Temple Newsam and Tropical World

The two Leeds establishments wouldn’t normally appear on a list like this, but thanks to local council investment of upward of £25 million, the relic buildings are going to be retrofitted with eco-benefitting upgrades like solar panels and heat pumps. The council state that these investments in sustainable improvements in these and other buildings will help the city drop carbon output by nearly 4,000 tonnes.

This a huge step forward by Leeds City Council, and the surrounding area. It shows that it’s not just new buildings that can make a difference, it shows older buildings can be retrofitted to be just as sustainable as eco-facilities.


Our Sustainable HQ

Not to toot our own horn, but we’re dropping our name into the hat among the rest of these sustainable developments. Our facility has undergone serious transformation in recent years, most notably with the voltage optimiser and the solar panels which combined will reduce our carbon output by over 43,000 kg! In addition to this, we have just installed the UK’s first HP latex printer, which prints at an extremely efficient rate, and uses water-based ink rather than the potentially pollutant alternatives, prompting sustainability in our printing.

To get your name on this list, consider using eco-friendly print and signage materials in your office, workspace, or retail outlet. Examples include; Recycled bottle wallpaper, Ocean Backlit Textile ECO FR, or Window Tex.

To find the full range of products we offer Visit the GreenSpaces page.