a.s.r. real estate

Sustainable inner city redevelopments of ASR DPRF

In last year’s GRESB newsletter, we elaborated on the activities of ASR DPRF related to shopping center management for convenience-oriented assets within the portfolio. As mentioned in the article, enhancing high street properties in historic inner cities can be particularly challenging. As the Fund’s portfolio is heavily weighted to these locations, there are challenges to upgrading the portfolio of the ASR Dutch Prime Retail Fund in terms of energy usage and sustainability performance. In the Dutch retail landscape and legal system, energy usage is often the tenants’ responsibility, inhibiting impact by the landlord.

However, over the course of last year, the Fund has improved on one of its trophy assets in terms of sustainability, resulting in the BREEAM ‘Very Good’ label for asset Koningsplein in August 2018. The following case study further addresses the Koningsplein redevelopment and improvements, which also benefit the timeline of the redevelopment and the relationship with governmental bodies, the neighborhood and other stakeholders. These relationships are important to ensure future flexibility and cooperation for the second phase of the redevelopment. This aids in mitigating the risk of planning objections and legal litigation.

Case study Koningsplein
undefinedDuring the appointment of the developer and (sub)contractor(s), ASR DPRF incorporated sustainability as a key criterium. Certain items were explicitly included in the contracts, such as waste management, building material usage and nuisance limits. For this purpose, a communication adviser was appointed, who prepared information meetings with neighbors and tenants to explain the situation and planning.

Fitting with the historic building, listed parts of the property were carefully restored and repaired to display the old grandeur of the building, using mostly existing building materials such as original window frames and historic ceilings. This increased the attractiveness of the units tremendously. New parts of the property were designed to enhance the historic surroundings and improve the access to upper floors. Unusual for an inner city location, solar panels will be installed, delivering energy to a part of the retail stores and common areas, as well as electricity to the 20 residential units. The residential units will have sound-proof insulation to ensure comfort, leading to a higher occupation rate and improved lettability. The presence of residents will improve the property into a mixed-use destination with better social control before and after opening hours of the retail stores. Lastly, modular building fences were used for the redevelopment, which improved flexibility and limits waste generation. An increased amount of building cycles for these building fences ultimately limit CO2-emissions and the building fences play a role in both marketing the property and keeping the building site safe and secure. The implementation of the carefully planned sustainability plan led to a BREEAM “Very Good”-label and a new standard in inner city store redevelopment.

BREEAM Coverage
Apart from Koningsplein, DSC Terwijde received a BREEAM In-Use label, and DSC Floriande is currently under study, resulting in a higher percentage of BREEAM In-Use coverage for the Fund of 27% as at 2019 (Q1 2018: 20%). The CSR Policy for 2018-2020 aims for a 100% BREEAM In-Use label coverage for all fully-owned DSCs, for which the Fund will obtain BREAAM In-Use labels for an additional four shopping centers.

BREEAM coverage


For more information on the Fund and its efforts on inner city sustainability, please contact Bart Vink.

Bart Vink
fund manager
ASR Dutch Prime Retail Fund
T: +31 (0)6 53 78 49 76
E: bart.vink@asr.nl