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west hub

The Hub is a low-energy, low-carbon building

After being built, the building scored an ‘Excellent’ BREEAM (Building Research Establishment (BRE) Environmental Assessment Method) rating. This means that the building has been assessed against a sustainability framework and deemed to be high performing in supporting commercial success as well as creating positive, environmental and social impact. 

Its design includes features such as light sensors and heat recovery alongside being heated by a ground source heat pump. Ground source heat pumps are more energy efficient than boilers because they use ambient heat from the ground.

In the West Café there are more Vegan options than meat

Like all food and beverage outlets run by UCS (The University Catering Service), the West Hub implements the University’s Sustainable Food Policy. These means that there are more vegan and vegetarian options on the menu than those containing meat. In fact, the Canteen serves no ruminant meat (mainly lamb and beef) at all. Sustainability is promoted rather than profit, with plant based options displayed more prominently than those containing meat.

No single use plastics are sold in the Café Bar and Canteen

Waste is also a hot topic at the West Hub, with the Café Bar and Canteen not providing any single use plastic cups. Those looking for water can use one of the many water fountains situated throughout the hub, and KeepCups can be purchased for those who forget their coffee mug.

The Hub is designed to be accessed via sustainable transport

The Hub has been designed to dissuade visitors from getting in their car to visit. Visitors are encouraged to walk, cycle or take the bus as there are no parking spaces attached to the building. From the city centre the West Hub is a 33-minute walk via the Coton footpath, a 10-minute cycle or a short bus ride on bus routes 4,8,U,X3 or the Park and Ride. For those who choose to cycle, there is cycle parking located on the South Plaza off JJ Thomson Avenue with showers and lockers available on the ground floor within the Canteen.

The Hub can be used to host events with Sustainability as the focus

As an event space the Hub also promotes sustainability. In fact we, the Sustainability Team, were lucky enough to host our 2022/2023 Engagement Programme launch there on October 20th. The vast majority of those who attended the event in person cycled, walked or took the bus. Instead of having our presenters travel from the North of England, we instead ran a hybrid events with some presenting via Teams.

Written by: Susie Cook, Engagement and Communications Coordinator with help from Nick White, Paula White and Anna Steeden from the University Catering Service and the West Hub Team.