Newly-built, sustainable housing can vary widely. The basic factors för us are residential density, space efficiency, materials, sharing economies, high energy requirements and bicycle-friendly surroundings.
Building for high residential density is self-evident for AF Bostäder. New areas are built in city environments where empty space is to be utilised maximally, preferably in combination projects with schools or other activities. Apartments can be designed for sharing by several people.
“Efficient use of space is a basic requirement,” says Magnus Cederberg, Property Development Manager at AF Bostäder. “We want to have as many places to live as possible in the square metres available, and all the elements are to be thought through to avoid having unused space. We never build billiard rooms or club premises, as we would then be putting resources and energy into spaces that will seldom be used. Instead, we ensure that natural meeting places such as laundry rooms and courtyards are pleasant places to be.”
“Student apartments are generally small, which basically makes them sustainable,” says Magnus Cederberg. “On average, our apartments offer 25 m2 per person. The use of resources is then as efficient as possible, both in new construction and for property management. In the Bokompakt concept, we are testing apartments that offer 10 m2.”
“All materials are to be strong and withstand the considerable moving around we have in our properties,” says Magnus Cederberg. “To avoid substances that are hazardous to health, we follow a system called BASTA, which is owned by the IVL Swedish Environment Research Institute and the Swedish Construction Federation. All the building materials we use in new construction are BASTA-certified.”
The economies of sharing and an economical use of resources are important aspects. Tenants share housing, laundry rooms, waste stations, outside environments etc.
“We never make individual adjustments, such as a washing machine in an apartment,” states Magnus Cederberg. “Instead we create large, pleasant laundry rooms that everyone shares, using an online booking system. One laundry room can meet the needs of 550 apartments. The rent includes automatic dosing of eco-friendly and hypoallergenic washing powder.”
The energy requirements in new construction regulations are strict, and AF Bostäder always does its best to ensure energy consumption is below the requirements.
“We have our own formulated energy requirement of 64 kWh per m2, which is lower than the National Board of Housing, Building and Planning’s for 2017, which is 75 kWh,” says Magnus Cederberg. “We install systems for heat recycling and solar cells where we can, and we monitor energy consumption in our properties. A challenge for the future is to further improve our energy performance, without compromising the indoor house climate and comfort.”
“Our newly-built housing areas are also generally car-free. Students prefer to cycle and we encourage that by providing areas adapted for pedestrians and cyclists. Among other things, all our tenants have a covered parking space for their bicycles,” concludes Magnus Cederberg.