10 years of commitment

10 years of commitment to...

Sustainable construction

Sonia Lucas Garcia y Elena Sáiz
Technical Management Retail at Grupo Lar

In a context where environmental responsibility and sustainability are top priorities for both society and the industry, Lar España has established itself over the past ten years as a firm advocate for sustainable construction. During this period, the REIT (Real Estate Investment Trust) has systematically carried out renovations and comprehensive projects that have substantially improved its portfolio based on three fundamental pillars: responsibility, transparency, and commitment to a greener future.

In just ten years, Lar España has channeled efforts to systematically renovate all of its assets, always giving priority to elements that meet the highest standards of sustainable construction. Placing nature and efficiency at the core of its assets has been a recurring corporate mantra, becoming a distinctive element and hallmark in all shopping centers and retail parks.

This ambitious goal has materialized, for example, with the installation of interior gardens, green roofs, and extensive outdoor green areas. The conservation and care of the environment surrounding each of the assets are also priorities. Therefore, each one has been transformed to protect its biodiversity using natural materials, incorporating biophilic design, and promoting sustainability in its construction.

In the commitment to respect the ecosystems linked to shopping centers and retail parks, a biodiversity management plan has been implemented, among which the case of Lagoh shopping center, located in Seville, has become a national and international reference. It is an exemplary example of what biophilic architecture contributes.

In its development, Lar España signed an agreement with the Research Foundation of the University of Seville, which provided scientific advice on the construction of the center to promote the preservation of local species and fauna and raise awareness among millions of visitors about this significant contribution. The planting of lippia ground cover (Phyla nodiflora) stands out in this regard, allowing for a green cover perfectly adapted to temperate Mediterranean climates, thereby improving the water efficiency of the asset.

Nature takes center stage in Lar España’s twelve shopping centers and retail parks. It not only provides a pleasant environment for everyone who visits them every day but also transforms them into healthier spaces by improving indoor air quality. Natural light has also been a protagonist in the projects carried out over these more than nine and a half years. To maximize its use, skylights have been implemented on roofs, and blind walls have been replaced by curtain walls.

Equally relevant has been the improvement in energy efficiency and the reduction of its carbon footprint. Significant reforms have been implemented to increase the use of green energy, promote savings and energy efficiency, as well as the installation of more suitable technologies. These have materialized with geothermal systems and the installation of LED technologies, as well as the direct use of renewable energy in all assets. In addition to these actions, there is a strong commitment to sustainable mobility, accessible environments, and the circular economy, with the installation of electric vehicle chargers in all centers, adaptation works to ensure universal accessibility, and various awareness campaigns carried out after each implementation of recycling programs aimed at customers and retailers.

Lar España’s efforts have produced tangible results in the last decade that highlight the investment made. Notable examples of this success include obtaining BREEAM certification for all twelve assets, with almost all of them rated as excellent or very good. Also, ISO 14001 certification in environmental management systems or UNE 170.001 in universal accessibility. This commitment is reflected in an effective action plan, including constant monitoring of EPRA sustainable indicators, which have just received the “Gold Award” for the seventh consecutive year, the highest recognition for the quality of sustainability reports presented by the company.

In conclusion, Lar España will celebrate just a few months of a decade of constant commitment to sustainable construction, where it has redefined its portfolio to meet the most rigorous sustainability standards. This demonstrates the commitment to sustainable leadership in the sector and corporate commitment to achieving a greener and more habitable world for future generations.