Stockholm's Liljeholmstorget to become Europe's first LEED platinum shopping center (SE)

Liljehomstorget Galleria, a shopping center developed and owned by Citycon, has been awarded a platinum LEED environmental certificate, the highest available. This Stockholm-based center is the first shopping center in Europe to achieve the highest LEED classification, and one of the world's few platinum-rated buildings of any kind.

The LEED certificate, awarded by the U.S. Green Building Certification Institute, is the best recognized international classification system rating buildings' environmental impacts. "It provides an extremely comprehensive, multifaceted picture of a building's environmental load. The certificate is based on several sub-areas, on the basis of which a building's environmental impacts are assessed," emphasises Kirsi Borg, Citycon, Manager, Sustainability.

"In terms of taking account of environmental issues, Citycon is a genuine forerunner. This award clearly demonstrates the company's commitment to sustainability and its ability to build in line with the toughest global standards. In the future, all of Citycon's development projects will be designed and built to comply with environmental certification criteria," states Petri Olkinuora, CEO of Citycon.

Liljeholmstorget has an excellent location in Liljeholmen, an urban redevelopment area. The centre is integrated with a metro station, a bus service hub terminal and a tramline. Built underground, the parking hall optimises land use, which is hugely important to this shopping centre situated in a densely built city structure. Liljeholmen is one of Stockholm's fastest growing employment and residential districts.

Water facilities within the centre use around 40% less water than standard solutions. Energy simulations reveal an energy saving of 18.9% based on standard comparison values. In addition, each set of retail premises has its own electricity meter, while air conditioning is based on district cooling and the centre's electricity is generated from wind power.

The center's waste sorting solutions guarantee a high degree of recycling, and 95% of waste from the construction phase was also recycled. Most construction material are locally produced, no more than 800 kilometers away from the centre. Indoor air quality is outstanding: ventilation exceeds the ASHRAE standard by 30%, in addition to which low-emission materials were selected as building materials, releasing the minimum odours and particles into indoor air.

A special feature in Liljeholmstorget is the green roof between the shopping center and the neighbouring office building. Even the parking hall promotes low emissions; low-emission cars are directed to separate, green parking grids. Leveraging plot efficiency and the aim to create a dense urban structure close to services, new apartments have been built on top of the shopping center.

LEED certification pays off
"Solutions in pursuit of the highest, platinum-level LEED certification raised the building costs by around 1 to 2%," affirms Ulf Attebrant, Vice President, Swedish Operations. "During the service life of the building, this investment will repay itself through factors such as lower utility costs of the property. For example, long-term energy and water prices are unlikely to fall." In addition, Attebrant believes that certified environmental friendliness will make Liljeholmstorget progressively more desirable to prospective tenants, since many international retailers already take environmental factors into consideration when making rental decisions.

Liljeholmstorget was opened in October 2010, with a huge success in terms of footfall and sales. Over 90% of visitors use public transport or arrive on foot. "This is a factor that has really surprised us. Clearly, the center services the entire Stockholm downtown area, due to easy and convenient access by metro," says Attebrant.

Liljeholmstorget is the Nordic countries' first platinum-level building and Europe's first platinum shopping center. It already represents Citycon's third LEED-certificated project. Last summer, the Trio shopping center in Finland was awarded the Nordic countries' first certificate, while at the beginning of 2010 the Rocca al Mare shopping center attained the Baltic countries' first, silver certificate. 

Source: Citycon Oyj

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