WTC Rotterdam leaps from energy label E to A within 3 years


The iconic high-rise made exceptionally more sustainable during renovation

Although the renovation of the World Trade Center Rotterdam is still underway, the building has already made huge strides in sustainability. At the start of this year, the building was expected to move from the E to C energy label, but today, the high-rise part was certified A. This jump was made in a relatively short space of time – this major improvement in sustainability only took three years. One of the reasons for this rapid improvement was the innovative climate control system. The efficient air purification system is driven by a thermal wheel that recycles the heat in the building, thus reducing the need to heat up cold air from outside. While it is not uncommon that buildings are made more sustainable during renovation, a jump of this level and scale is exceptional in Rotterdam’s construction sector. WTC Rotterdam is proud that it has already attained a goal that was set for 2030. In the year 2030, new energy regulations will require all buildings to be certified with the A energy label.

Rik van der Lee, Technical Property Manager at WTC explained that “The jump in the label is the outcome of all the efforts that we have put into renovating the WTC effectively and making it more sustainable. Bouwinvest Dutch Institutional Office Fund, the owner of the office and conference part of the building, set itself the goal of restoring the WTC to its former glory, but then incorporating all the changes that this modern era brings. It could not have foreseen that the challenge it set itself would turn out to be so positive. We are so pleased that the building now has the A label.” 

In the words of Jan-Willem Kos, Senior Asset Manager van Bouwinvest Dutch Institutional Office Fund, “Sustainability is high on our list of priorities in developing and managing our buildings. It extends the life of a building and this helps maintain the building’s value in the future. Another testimonial to our efforts is being awarded the Green Star. This is the GRESB’s highest independent, scientific benchmark for the sustainability policy of property development funds and portfolios around the world. We are very proud of being awarded the Green Star.”

Pioneer in the move towards a sustainable and green Rotterdam
By 2023, all office blocks in the Netherlands must have a C energy label at the very least. New legislation and regulations are preparing for an A label in 2030. WTC Rotterdam already meets these standards and in doing so, makes an important contribution to a sustainable and green city of Rotterdam. While the low-rise building, as a listed historic building is excepted, it will nevertheless be made more sustainable. For a start, 100 new solar panels will be installed on its roofs. The current lighting plan will be replaced by LED lighting and a sustainable option will be chosen for every component of the renovation.

Exceptional outcome: a 0.96 energy index
The Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) is the European guidelines on buildings’ energy performance. The energy label is calculated according to the energy performance of a building’s specific architectural qualities and units. The calculation takes the average climate of the Netherlands into account, the average occupancy rate and the average user behavior. To obtain the A energy label, a building needs to have an energy index below 1.05. With its energy index of 0.96, WTC Rotterdam proves that it is very energy efficient.

Renovated floor in the high-rise of WTC Rotterdam with its sustainable lighting plan.