High Tech Campus Eindhoven aims to be a ‘great place to work’. This is rooted in the dynamics, facilities and people that work at the Campus. But its responsible attitude certainly contributes to the credo. Since the start, the Campus invested approximately 50 million Euro in a series of sustainable measures that enhance sustainable operations. The measures are based on five pillars, together forming a blueprint for corporate sustainability.
1. Start with Green Design
Sustainable corporate citizenship starts with the design. The Campus is designed around sustainability from the ground up. The park-like landscape is based on five forms of the original Brabant landscapes. This enhances a ‘fit’ with the environment, supporting the (preservation of) biodiversity, natural water flow and offering a pleasant atmosphere for residents and visitors.
Landscape management is merely conducted with ecological means. For example, the vegetation in the Dommel valley-area, is controlled by the use of cows from our neighbor farm Genneper Hoeve. And currently we are doing a study to use sheep for the Heathland-area in a similar fashion. The water regulation is controlled naturally by creeks, canals and the large pond at the heart of the Campus.
2. Energy is key
With over 300,000 m² of buildings (and potential up to 400,000 m²) and special facilities such as cleanrooms; energy consumption is a major concern. Therefore buildings are designed to be extremely energy-efficient, built with sustainable materials and transparent facades (reducing the need for lighting and heating). This means buildings comprise both energy-efficiency and comfort for its users.
Remarkable is the usage of a large scale cold-and-heat storage system (CHO). All buildings are connected to this CHO. The system uses two reservoirs in the well-insulating sandy layers of the ground. In summer cold water is pumped up for cooling, and while heating up, it is stored for heating buildings in wintertime. Balance in the system is found by special users, such as the KPN Datacenter, producing large amounts of heat. The CHO is the backbone in the energy-efficiency of the Campus, reducing the usage of gas (and production of CO2) considerably. The system is continuously improved, aiming at a zero fossil fuel usage in the future.
3. Travel smart
Smart mobility is key in sustainable behavior. The Campus has over 10,000 ‘inhabitants’ and has been able to bring the percentage of green travellers up to 35%. Therefore the site provides in public transport connections, and heavily encourages commuting by electric vehicles (EV), bike and carpool. Currently, the EV-charging points are scaled up from 20 to 40 and there is an active campaign stimulating the use of e-bikes to expand the range of home/work travel by bike from 7 to 20 kilometers. The 125 free Campus Bikes for on-site movement, are a successful project in reducing CO2-emissions on the premises.
All cars are stored (out of sight) in smart parking garages. By equipping the garages with led-luminaries, solar panels and adaptive lighting systems, the Campus was able to reduce their power-usage with 80%!
4. Community engagement
The creation and deployment of sustainable measures, exceeds management initiative. The Campus community is actively involved in the idea generation and implementation process. This raises awareness and sometimes leads to remarkable projects. A nice example is the Community Garden. A kitchen garden, led and maintained by a number of volunteers. The garden produces a range of vegetables and fruits that find their way to the kitchen of Grand Café the Colour Kitchen. In return the Community Garden receives the food waste for compost, creating a mini circular-economy on site.
As the Campus is a center for research, development and business, a number of residents is involved in developing sustainable technological solutions for the future. The Campus houses Solliance, SEAC, Philips Research and a number of start-ups, developing among others high yield solar systems. Philips Horticulture is investigating the benefits of growing vegetables in optimum conditions in labs. And with energy provider Eneco, the Campus is performing a study around the deployment of wind energy systems alongside the highway A2.
Corporate Sustainability is an ongoing process. The methods of yesterday may well be overtaken by better and smarter alternatives today. By continuously developing around the pillars design, energy, mobility, engagement and research, High Tech Campus Eindhoven strives to be a responsible corporate citizen and an example to others.