Baku White City Office Building becomes the first green certified asset in Azerbaijan


The Class-A Baku White City Office Building had achieved the distinction of being the first property in Azerbaijan to be awarded BREEAM certification with high rating of Good. The global real estate adviser JLL managed the BREEAM assessment process for the landmark building, which is part of the Baku White City.

Baku White City Office Building (15,861 sq m GLA) is the first office centre within the project: it will act as the headquarters for international companies in the country. It is situated at the entrance to the Baku White City scheme, and strategically located at the junction of Babek and Nobel highways. The achievement of becoming the first building to pass BREEAM certification in Azerbaijan rеflеcts thе cоuntry’s growing dеsire tо mееt intеrnаtiоnal stаndards fоr grееn buildings аnd, in particular, satisfies President Ilham Aliyev’s Decree on ‘Comprehensive Action Plan for improving the ecological conditions in the Republic of Azerbaijan’.

The main sustainability features of the office project are as follows:

  • The building has been designed in a highly efficient manner to provide the most comfortable environment for its occupants – almost 100% of all office spaces have access to daylight and outside views, and fresh air is provided all year round through the use of combination of mechanical intake and natural exhaust.
  • Energy efficiency is achieved through advanced architectural design (building orientation and shape; access to daylight), natural air extract systems, efficient high-end lighting and automated controls.
  • Alternative modes of transport are stimulated through the introduction of specialised facilities including cycle racks and electrical charging stages. A complex, holistic approach to travelling and its environmental impact was developed through the Travel Plan created for the project.
  • Water efficiency is accomplished through efficient sanitation fittings, dreep feed irrigation and leak detection system.
  • During the design stages of the project a series of studies were conducted to make informed decisions on design alternatives – such as energy modelling in line with the international ASHRAE standard and the lifecycle impact assessment of materials with the use of the IMPACT tool.
  • State-of-the-art landscaping will enhance local biodiversity through the introduction of flora from other regions that have similar climatic conditions. The new ecosystem will enrich the area and enhance it as an aesthetically appealing destination.

Ksenia Agapova, Head of Sustainability Services at JLL, Russia & CIS, comments: “It’s a huge honour to participate in such a high-end project in the heart of the new redevelopment district of Baku White City. You cannot underestimate the financial and social meaning of this historical achievement – the first building in the country to achieve BREEAM certification. The environmental strategy and action plan are certainly very important competitive advantages for international tenants seeking to settle their offices in Baku, and the first assessment in the country represents a significant breakthrough for local green development. We hope that the success our project team managed to achieve will be continued on future projects within the Baku development.”

BREEAM certification was chosen by Baku White City in order to uplift the building’s value for future tenants, as well as to provide an international recognition of the high quality of construction. BREEAM validates not only the energy efficiency of the building but also the holistic approach taken towards sustainable design and construction. The certification has now encouraged White City to choose BREEAM principles and certification for its next project within the redevelopment plan. This time the certification process will be started at an earlier concept design stage in order to gain the maximum benefits of BREEAM for future tenants.

Gavin Dunn, Director of BREEAM, BRE Global, says: “Congratulations to the team involved with the Baku White City project. This is a first for BREEAM in Azerbaijan and demonstrates the vision and commitment of the developers, design team and contractors”.

BREEAM is the leading global environmental assessment system of buildings and was created in 1990 by the British organization BRE Global. Today BREEAM is an international quality mark for high-tech buildings. Over 425,000 certificates have been issued under BREEAM on more than 24,000 projects around the world, and 1.9 million buildings and communities are registered for certification. BREEAM helps to drive the sustainable performance and value of a property asset and developments as a whole.