Kier operations director David Snell said: “The new Energy Centre, with its bold design and prominent location, will establish Torbay at the heart of the renewables industry in the southwest. It is vital that young people, and those already working in the industry, have the skills to apply and develop sustainable technologies and solutions. The Passivhaus, which we are building as part of the centre, will be an additional real-life exemplar of robust and sustainable technology, which I believe will prove invaluable to students.
“Kier also has a particular connection with South Devon College; seven of our management team are past students, which means we have a very personal interest in the new Energy Centre and playing our part in preparing students to build the houses of the future.”
Low carbon and energy saving features in the building include: thermal cooling through night vents; computer-managed energy systems; biomass boiler; plus optimum daylight to reduce lighting requirements.
Once completed in the summer of 2013, the Energy Centre will provide training and R&D. It will also offer support and guidance for businesses looking to enter or grow in the low carbon and renewables market and incubation and innovation space for new businesses and start-ups.
Partners in the project include Schneider, Worcester Bosch, SEMA, Western Electric, Nu-Heat, British Ceramic Tiles, Havmain, Romag, Sunfarming, Torbay Development Agency, Green Tourist Business Scheme, Energy Saving Trust and RegenSW.