WELL Building Standard Gaining Momentum in Europe
As Greenbuild Europe came to a close in Berlin, the International WELL Building Institute™ (IWBI™) used the occasion to highlight how the WELL Building Standard™ (WELL™) has elevated health and well-being to the forefront of sustainability conversations across Europe.
WELL continues to advance the healthy building movement as the premier standard for buildings, interior spaces and communities seeking to implement, validate and measure features that promote human health and wellness. The resonance of the program has spurred innovations across the building, design and construction industries, providing projects with customizable approaches to address geographical and cultural health concerns.
To date, WELL has enrolled more than 830 projects encompassing over 155 million square feet of real estate in 32 countries worldwide. In Europe nearly 190 projects across 13 countries are engaged with WELL, representing 25% of global WELL project square footage. The strong growth of WELL over the past year has been led by early adopter markets, notably France, United Kingdom, Spain and the Netherlands – as well as rapid new expansion in Poland, Sweden and Ireland. Finland, Germany, Hungary and Italy registered their first registered projects in 2017, and the Czech Republic and Slovakia markets are being driven by strong local industry leaders.
Nearly 300 industry professionals in Europe have also successfully passed the WELL Accredited Professional (WELL AP™) exam, highlighting the growing pool of practitioners and industry professionals looking to develop and demonstrate their understanding of healthy building strategies.
“The growth of WELL across Europe tells a powerful success story of positive international engagement and speaks to the universal need to support and advance human health through the buildings and spaces we inhabit every day,” said IWBI Chairman and CEO Rick Fedrizzi.
He added, “We’re seeing buildings throughout the region utilize WELL as a holistic framework to help improve health and well-being for everyone inside, signaling to the world that these organizations are putting people first.”
Employers can play a critical role by leveraging the workplace environment to recruit and retain the best talent, reduce absenteeism and improve the happiness, satisfaction and productivity of their employees. Similarly, the vast majority of WELL projects in Europe are being driven by landlords and developers as they seek to offer commercial buildings that will attract companies in pursuit of healthy workspace. Individual organizations are also turning to WELL in an effort to cultivate healthy interior workplaces and adapt to a changing work culture.
A recent survey of corporate occupiers in the EMEA region highlighted the wellness agenda as a strong and growing focus, alongside technology and flexible space, in an attempt to enhance the experience of people inside the spaces. Of those surveyed, four out of five occupiers have, or plan to introduce, wellness programs and 92% have some degree of preference for wellness-enabled buildings.1
In addition to multifamily residential and educational facilities, new sectors interested in applying health and well-being best practices include industrial and warehouse facilities, leisure complexes and senior living facilities.
Further, IWBI has established local market partnerships with several green building councils and other key organizations in Europe, including APTA VITAE (Italy), Blue Building Institute (Netherlands), and Polish Green Building Council (PLGBC).
These organizations are working with IWBI within their respective markets to accelerate the uptake of building practice that helps improve the health and wellness of people everywhere. Each organization has committed to promote the adoption of WELL locally, develop and drive educational initiatives, and collaborate with IWBI to prepare members of each local market for the WELL AP program.
About the International WELL Building Institute
The International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) is leading the global movement to transform our buildings and communities in ways that help people thrive. IWBI delivers the cutting-edge WELL Building Standard (WELL), the first to be focused exclusively on the ways that buildings, and everything in them, can improve our comfort, drive better choices, and generally enhance, not compromise, our health and wellness. Its work extends to advancing health through design for entire neighborhoods through the WELL Community Standard™ and supporting the growing number of professionals who seek WELL accreditation. Certification of buildings and accrediting of professionals is third-party administered by Green Building Certification Inc. www.wellcertified.com
About WELL Standards
The WELL Building Standard™ (WELL) is a performance-based system for measuring, certifying and monitoring features of buildings around the globe that impact the health and wellness of people. It is grounded in evidence-based research that demonstrates the connection between the buildings where people spend approximately 90 percent of their time and those buildings' health and wellness impacts on those who use them. The WELL Community Standard™ is a district-scale rating system that takes into account the interconnectivity between buildings and their surroundings and the overall impact on human health. The WELL Building Standard and the WELL Community Standard are developed and delivered by the International WELL Building Institute™ and third- party certified by Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI). www.wellcertified.com.
ADDENDUM – WELL Certified Projects in Europe:
One Carter Lane, London
Landsec Workplace, London
55 Amsterdam, Paris
The Porter Building, Slough
Portes de Paris, Clichy
Ireland: One Albert Quay, Cork
Spain: CBRE Madrid
Finland: Green Building Partners Office, Helsinki
1 EMEA Occupier Survey 2018, Optimising User Experience: The Personalised Workplace, CBRE Research: https://www.cbre.com/research-and-reports/EMEA-Occupier-Survey-2018
Kristen Coco, +44 (0) 7377 815 047
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