Technology developed by Newcastle headquartered Twinview has supported the first building in the world to achieve the coveted SmartScore Platinum standard – the international benchmark for best-in-class smart, sustainable, carbon-neutral buildings.

The Hickman, a recently refurbished building in Whitechapel, London, is part of a property portfolio owned by Great Portland Estates plc.

SmartScore Platinum status is awarded only to those properties that use the latest technologies to create energy-efficient, future-focused spaces, offering a world-class environment for those who live and work in them, as well as demonstrating their long-term viability through leading-edge innovations. No other building in the world has ever met the standard.

In their ambition to secure SmartScore Platinum status, Great Portland Estates were early adopters of Twinview technology, integrating it into the fabric of the building. The first commercial platform of its kind, Twinview is revolutionising the management of property. It connects Internet of Things (IoT) devices, facilities management software, operational and management information to a Building Information Model (BIM), all of which can be accessed in a web browser from anywhere, at any time.

Twinview, part of Space Group, helps reduce carbon outputs and operational costs including energy, whilst creating a golden thread of information throughout the life of the building, recording maintenance decisions and changes through occupation – all in one place. This golden thread is a critical element of the UK Government’s draft Building Safety Bill published in July 2020 in response to the Grenfell Tower disaster, currently progressing through parliament.

James Pellatt, Director of Workplace and Innovation at Great Portland Estates commented: “For us, the exciting thing about the (Twinview) digital twin is to really understand how a building is used and how to predict energy – not just in this building (The Hickman) but for others in our development pipeline.

“The more we learn, the more we measure, the more we can improve and we’re always looking to improve.

“Since integrating with Twinview, we have seen some initial benefits. By just allowing engineers to understand the building before they arrive, they are able to look around (using Twinview) and understand what is there, and that’s really important – it’s underestimated.

“We have some really strong ambitions of achieving Net Zero and what we learn at The Hickman will help us get there.

“The relationship we have with Twinview is extremely important to us – it is how we like to collaborate and how we like to innovate. By listening to people who challenge us, but also respond to challenges is really key to us in onboarding and integrating technology. It is a strategy we use throughout the portfolio.”

Since launching the platform 18 months ago, Twinview has signed partnership deals with Nordic BIM Group in Norway, Sweden and Finland, bimTEC in Portugal and IIMBE in New Zealand and Australia, allowing the company to quickly scale globally. There are plans to expand into North America and mainland Europe.

Adam Ward, a director at Twinview, said; “It’s great to see The Hickman receive the SmartScore Platinum status, which demonstrates just how much thought, effort and planning went into the refurbishment of the building. Great Portland Estates were early proponents of our technology, recognising it could provide them with a holistic view of energy usage as well as a way of thoroughly documenting decisions and changes through occupation – all in one place.

“More and more building investors, developers and managers are understanding that by investing and designing-in technologies like Twinview at key stages in a building’s life, they are contributing to carbon-neutral targets, while creating longer-term efficiencies and more desirable environments. This might be at the start of a project or during a remodelling exercise, but whatever the timing, the use of smart technologies is here to stay and plays a critical role in the future of building design.