Page 54 - European Energy Innovation - Summer 2014
P. 54
Summer 2014 European Energy Innovation


Sustainable shopping centres

as a reflection of modern society

By Cosmina Marian, for the Buildings Performance Institute Europe (BPIE)

Shopping centres – such 1950s in Sweden, only to quickly potential which can be exploited
as the Grand Bazaar in spread throughout Europe in the in order to make a difference
Istanbul, and galleries 60s and 70s, initially in the UK and transform shopping centres
have been around for and France. The rising number of into best-practice cases for
many centuries but developed centres is strongly tied to rising sustainability.
in their modern form in Europe incomes, increased consumer
only over the past 50 years. They mobility and the occurrence of MIRRORING SOCIAL NEEDS
have become very important in new retail chain stores. As a result AND TRENDS
Europe as they provide economic of changing needs of society Because of their visibility and
benefits for the community and and economic growth, the retail status within communities,
represent a unique real-estate industry has had to adapt. In the shopping centres have the
asset for investors. Shopping beginning, shopping malls were potential to act as represent
centres are also trying to respond an indication of the economic beacons for energy efficiency
to social needs by embracing wellbeing and vitality of a town. investments. Their best practices
environmentally-sensitive set an example for other actors
building practices. This isn’t just More recently, a surge of to take action and improve the
smart for business but owners shopping centres also has energy performance of buildings.
and managers also want to meet appeared in new EU Member Whilst the energy consumed by
a social responsibility in their States as they have grown commercial developments pales
communities. economically. Today shopping in comparison with residential
centres can be found in every buildings, the public visibility of
A BRIEF INTRODUCTION OF European country. They are a shopping centres makes them
THE EUROPEAN SHOPPING vibrant source of commerce, perfect drivers in the field of
CENTRE development and growth. The energy efficiency.
Shopping centres began their retail industry’s size, reach and
European modern history in the impact have a great deal of For some retailers, sustainability
was built-in from the very
Paris Défense beginning, for others it had
to be incorporated into their
practices later on. In any case,
sustainability has become a
key consideration for the retail
industry and it’s now affecting
many facets of the business – from
strategy, operations, workforce
engagement to connections to
consumers and communities.1
The sustainability aspect touches
upon many issues such as
reducing energy, greenhouse
gases, waste and chemicals.
The scope of these practices is
so wide that there is also a high
demand for innovative practices
and technologies.

The retail industry is thus in need
of more tools and knowledge
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