16 December 2016

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Bouwinvest has renamed its recently refurbished office building in the heart of Utrecht ‘Nieuwe Vaart’ (New Journey) to represent its positioning as a new sustainability hub for companies that adopt these principles as a central part of their corporate ethos. Tenants Max Havelaar (sustainable commerce) and Oikocredit (micro-finance), engaged with Bouwinvest in the planning to lift the sustainable profile of the building and attract other like-minded socially responsible firms. As a result, almost the entire 11,000 sqm of floor space has now been let.

Nieuwe Vaart at Arthur van Schendelstraat no. 500-550-600, is close to Utrecht central station and was formerly occupied by the city’s municipality. Together with Studio Salemans architects and under the supervision of real estate project manager Themis Vastgoedpartners, Bouwinvest developed the concept of "Caring is Sharing" in the project. This aims to encourage sustainably-minded organisations to move to a smaller location and share common facilities as much as possible. 

Sustainable building, management and use

A Green Lease was signed with various tenants within Nieuwe Vaart and the energy label was improved from D to B, while solar panels were installed on top of the building. The remaining roof area has been transformed into green spaces and recycled materials were used for the furnishing of the common areas, where possible. These measures have resulted in a BREEAM-In-Use certification with a ‘Good’ score. The plans included a newly furnished lounge with coffee and lunch facilities, meeting rooms and flexible conversation areas, at the disposal of all tenants. 

Sustainable multifunctional offices

Clustering tenants thematically fits within the strategy of Bouwinvest’s Office Fund, that focuses on “future proofing” office space where flexibility and social encounters lie at the core of the concept. The following organisations have signed tenancy agreements at Nieuwe Vaart: Stichting MVO Nederland (ca. 825 sqm), Stichting IDH Sustainable Trade Initiative (ca. 725 sqm), Stichting Natuur en Milieu, supervised by Solved (ca. 825 sqm), Stichting Nationaal Jeugd Fonds Jantje Beton (ca. 415 sqm), Stichting Nationaal Instituut voor Budgetvoorlichting (Nibud), supervised by Jacobus Recourt (ca. 460 sqm), Onderwijscoöperatie (ca. 640 sqm) and Stichting voor Arbeidsverhoudingen Overheidspersoneel (ca. 360 sqm). The "Caring is Sharing" concept also includes micro offices. Tenants for this are amongst others Stichting The Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN Netherlands), Stichting Nationaal Instituut voor Budgetvoorlichting (Nibud) and R3born Holding B.V. 

Ans de Wijn Bedrijfshuisvesting assisted Bouwinvest with the lease of the offices, in cooperation with JLL.