Active Building Research Centre – A Stronger Story

Marie Greaves, Communications Team

Published March 2021

The second in a series of Stronger Stories from the Active Building Centre – part of Transforming Construction Challenge.  Here we explore the development of the Research Centre at Berkeley, South Gloucestershire and its aim is to speed up development of Active Building systems.   

Shifting the narrative to match the transformation

With the Transforming Construction Challenge over halfway through its funding period, it has invested in exceptional innovations that are fundamentally changing the way we are building – innovations that put the value to the end user at the heart of construction. Yet we know we also need to shift the narrative around UK construction and use these success stories to encourage other partners, up and down the supply chain, to adopt new manufacturing and data-driven processes – processes that will see us building more sustainably, putting long-term whole-life value ahead of short-term margins and cost savings.

The Transforming Construction team are collecting and writing these case studies using the world’s most powerful story patterns, so that they become stronger stories that drive change. These stories are housed on a digital story database so they can be accessed and shared with ease, and to ensure they align to our new transformative narrative for UK construction.

Active Building systems & making the business case

Active Buildings incorporate various renewable energy technologies so they are able to generate, store and use power and heat intelligently. How these various technologies work together is key to maximising performance for the optimum payback time. The Active Building Centre has created a research centre so that developers of renewable energy solutions for buildings can test them as part of an integrated system using a plug-and-play approach in both lab and live environments. The facilities can create different scenarios, replicate conditions and standards of existing buildings, and create digital twins of buildings – so ideas can be quickly remodelled and refined in the lab and re-tested in real life. The aim is to speed up development of Active Building systems and have the data to make the business case for their widespread adoption.


The full Stronger Story: Active Building Research Centre, Berkeley