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£500,000 to cut carbon in the Welsh construction industry

28 July 2009

Ensuring the Welsh construction industry makes the most of the latest academic research into the design and delivery of low or zero carbon buildings has received a £500,000 funding boost.

The Centre for Research in the Built Environment (CRiBE) at Cardiff University’s Welsh School of Architecture will receive the funding over the next three years to help equip the Welsh construction industry with the latest knowledge and skills on the design, costing and delivery of low or zero carbon buildings.

Academic Expertise for Business (A4B) is a six-year programme of support funded by the Welsh Assembly Government and European Structural Funds aimed at providing knowledge transfer from academia to Welsh industry and businesses.

Professor Phil Jones, Head of Cardiff University’s Welsh School of Architecture, said: "The Welsh School of Architecture, through our Centre for Research in the Built Environment (CRiBE) is leading the way in the sustainable design, construction and operation of the built environment.

"Our academic research is helping to design low and carbon free building design for the future. However, this is not always translated and taken fully on-board by the construction industry itself.

"This funding will enable CRiBE to work more closely with the Welsh construction industry itself and transfer our knowledge and help the industry meet stringent targets for reductions in carbon emissions."

The grant will enable CRiBE to transfer research knowledge to the industry through a series of outreach events, strategic consultations, case studies and detailed best practice examples.

Research by the Welsh School of Architecture is already helping in the design and production of sustainable construction in Wales. Ty Unnos or ‘house built in one night’ designed by the University’s Design Research Unit Wales uses a system of high performance affordable housing based on the properties of home-grown Welsh timber.

The building system comprises a series of portal frames made from Welsh spruce beams. Secondary ladder beams span between these frames to form floor and ceiling joists and wall studs before pre-insulated infill panels with voids for windows and doors.

The award winning system has been widely recognised for its focus on sustainability and for bringing together ancient Welsh building traditions with new technology.

Professor Phil Jones added: "The aim of this funding is to promote a high value-added Welsh economy and to maximise the economic impact of academia and business.

"Transferring academic knowledge will not only help cut Wales’ carbon emissions but help create high value jobs and ultimately, a value-added economy for the future."

Welsh School of Architecture

The Welsh School of Architecture is one of the most successful and longest established schools of architecture in Britain. It is one of the few schools in Britain where undergraduates have the opportunity to complete the two-tier degree scheme leading to the award of the BArch within five years.

Visit the Welsh School of Architecture’s website at:

Cardiff University

Cardiff University is recognised in independent government assessments as one of Britain’s leading teaching and research universities and is a member of the Russell Group of the UK’s most research intensive universities. Among its academic staff are two Nobel Laureates, including the winner of the 2007 Nobel Prize for Medicine, Professor Sir Martin Evans.

Founded by Royal Charter in 1883, today the University combines impressive modern facilities and a dynamic approach to teaching and research. The University’s breadth of expertise in research and research-led teaching encompasses: the humanities; the natural, physical, health, life and social sciences; engineering and technology and preparation for a wide range of professions.

Visit the University website at:

Professor Phil Jones

Welsh School of Architecture

Telephone: 02920 874078


Chris Jones

Communications and International Relations Division

Telephone: 029 20 874731