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Inside the world’s greenest building

Published at: 30 October 2015

“It knows where you live. It knows what car you drive. It knows who you’re meeting with today and how much sugar you take in your coffee. (At least it will, after the next software update.) This is the Edge, and it’s quite possibly the smartest office space ever constructed.” Tom Randall explains of Amsterdam’s Edge building - Deloitte’s HQ in the Netherlands. Everything is connected in the Edge. The app Randall refers to allows you to find your colleagues (there are no specific desks in the building), adjust the heating, or manage your gym routine. You can even order up a dinner recipe, and a bag of fresh ingredients will await you when the workday is over.

According to British rating agency BREEAM, which gave it the highest ­sustainability score ever awarded: 98.4 percent - it is also the greenest building in the world. Just some of the features are super-efficient LED panels, made by Philips specifically for the Edge, which require such a trickle of electricity that they can be powered using the same cables that carry data for the Internet. The panels are also packed with sensors: motion, light, temperature, humidity, infrared - creating a “digital ceiling” that wires the building like synapses in a brain.

“It’s about using information technology to shape both the way we work and the spaces in which we do it. It’s about resource efficiency in the traditional sense - the solar panels create more electricity than the building uses - but it’s also about the best use of the humans” Randall says. “We think we can be the Uber of buildings,” says Coen van Oostrom, chief executive officer of OVG Real Estate, the building’s developer. “We connect them, we make them more efficient, and in the end we will actually need fewer buildings in the world.”

To read more about the “uber of buildings” look at this beautiful website.

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