Mildenhall Hub's story
The building was conceived under the One Public Estate Programme and designed by Concertus to be an exemplar building in terms of efficiency and renewable energy generation. Energy efficiency is central to the building’s design. While around 600 solar panels generate electricity during daylight hours, a large 300kW battery called an E-STOR, made using 24 second-life Renault Kangoo electric vehicle batteries, store any excess energy generated by the panels. It then switches to that onsite generated renewable energy at peak times, saving costs in the process. The battery storage system is the first to be implemented at a West Suffolk Council site. The building also features a ground source heat pump which is used to heat the pools, saving on greenhouse gases, and a combined heat and power system (CHP) which combines a boiler and electricity generator into one. It generates electricity while heat created as a by-product is used for the hot water for the rest of the hub building as well as heating the pool air and toward heating the overall building. The Mildenhall Hub also benefits from environmental features including a sustainable drainage system and green corridors.
By replacing multiple, less efficient spaces with a new hyper-efficient building, Mildenhall Hub cuts down local carbon emissions. It also reduces the number of journeys that residents have to make to access different services, reducing air pollution and cars on the road. While it has a large catchment, the hub is well connected to the surrounding area for cyclists and pedestrians and is on a bus route. For those who still have to drive, multiple electric vehicle charging points are available on site.
Although the centre has only been open for a few months, it is already well used and is a great example of a collaborative, innovative, and climate-conscious public sector project.
Useful learnings from Mildenhall Hub
Choose the right partners – With such a big and complex project, it was vital to choose the right contractors and suppliers. We’d recommend looking for experienced partners who have worked on projects of a similar scale and complexity in the past.
Be flexible and implement strong risk management – With a project that takes a long time to come to fruition, you have to be adaptable and build in contingencies for unexpected obstacles and new opportunities.
Mildenhall Hub's metrics