New high for Bristol office scheme as developers crane in fir tree to top it out

October 1, 2021

The firms behind a new office development in Bristol city centre have staged a traditional topping out ceremony to celebrate its highest point of construction.

The rooftop ceremony staged by developers Nord and Skanska was marked with the Scandinavian good luck tradition of flying a fir tree over the building by tower crane, together with the start of the roofworks. 

One Portwall Square will provide 33,750 sq ft of grade A office space, together with a large, landscaped square.

With an emphasis on energy efficiency and sustainability, the scheme is being built to a BREEAM Excellent accreditation, as well as an EPC rating of A.

The building, designed by architects AHMM, will also be the first office development in Bristol to feature in-slab cooling, with cooled water pumped through pipework installed in the floor slabs.

The building will also connect to Bristol’s low carbon district heating network, which is currently being installed.

Additionally, the development will achieve a WiredScore and Cycling Score Certification Platinum in recognition of its commitment to outstanding connectivity and exceptional cycling amenities.

Nord founder Richard Jones said: “Our aim is to deliver new standards in innovation, post-Covid occupant amenity and office design, combining modern and flexible floorplates with generosity of space and light.

“One Portwall Square blends contemporary architecture with an outstanding specification to provide an inspiring and adaptable working environment that sets a new standard for offices in Bristol.”

Skanska operations director Charlie Norris added: “One Portwall Square’s focus on user wellness will be achieved by incorporating a range of features such as excellent cycling and changing facilities and large outdoor terraces on all upper floors.

“A south-facing square will provide a tranquil area, helping to improve and support people’s physical and emotional wellbeing by providing an outdoor space where they can take time out of their busy workdays to unwind and relax.

“The simple yet innovative mixed-mode heating and cooling system which only uses fresh air, together with the natural ventilation enabled by the opening windows gives users the ability to engage with their workplace environment to create a well-ventilated, healthy and comfortable internal space.”

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