British Land, Mace, and Make Architects have delivered one of London’s largest and most significant new office developments using only responsibly-sourced timber within the building, and during its construction.


(© J. Madden)© J. MaddenThe development, 5 Broadgate, is one of the largest single office buildings in the City of London’s financial district, with 700,000 square feet of floor space over 12 storeys. It has used 1,200 cubic metres of timber (the equivalent of 250 mature trees) including everything from MDF and plywood to tropical hardwoods for the building’s finishes; all sourced from responsibly-managed forests.

Certification at scale

The video marks 5 Broadgate’s formal FSC project certification and the culmination of a construction programme that has ensured that every piece of its timber is FSC certified. The certification guarantees that wood comes from a responsibly-managed forest, is recycled, or comes from other controlled sources. It also ensures a clear chain of custody from the forest to the sawmill, and ultimately to the project.

It was released to demonstrate how FSC certification applies to major property projects in addition to the consumer goods with which people more readily associate FSC’s hallmark. 5 Broadgate is one of only a small number of developments to be accredited worldwide.

The video also highlights FSC’s role in ensuring that forestry protects the workers and local economies impacted by the industry, as well as its more established remit to safeguard the forests and their ecosystems. It includes perspectives from people across the project, from its lead architect to its carpenters.

The FSC Project Chain of Custody certification for 5 Broadgate was awarded by multi-certification body BM TRADA.

Vic Bowen, Chief Operating Officer for BM TRADA Certification UK, comments: “Sourcing FSC timber presents specific challenges for construction companies and FSC Project Chain of Custody certification has been designed as a mechanism for independently verifying the use of FSC certified timber, allowing the construction industry to use the FSC trademarks to promote their responsibly sourced credentials.

FSC Project certification is a voluntary scheme and as such companies that make the decision to go for it should be justifiably proud of their commitment to sustainable development.

FSC Project certification requires significant commitment at both corporate and management level to achieve the high standards set. Mace has demonstrated a high level of commitment which has been consistently maintained throughout the construction through to completion of 5 Broadgate.”

Commitment to sustainability

FSC project certification is part of a range of sustainability initiatives and design features for 5 Broadgate, the development of which has been guided by British Land’s Sustainability Brief for Developments and designed by Make Architects.

The project has recently achieved BREEAM Excellent, and includes 700 square feet of green roof space. Its solar and photovoltaic panels will generate 503,000 Kwhrs of power each year, and waste has been carefully managed throughout the project to minimise arisings, encourage re-use and divert as much as possible from landfill.

5 Broadgate will be home to UBS – consolidating the organisation’s London trading into one building. Mace was appointed as construction manager in 2011, after providing cost consultancy for the scheme since 2007. The project’s certification code is TT-PRO-004448.

Logo presentationRosie Teasdale, Executive Director for FSC UK, comments:


"Those involved in the construction of 5 Broadgate have demonstrated real commitment to FSC and sustainability. Deforestation and illegal logging continue to threaten the world's forests, but FSC allows you to source wood, a wonderful renewable material, responsibly. Certifying entire buildings supports responsible forestry on a big scale, and this film will go a long way to show that certification is not only achievable but important and advantageous within the construction sector."

Sarah Cary, Sustainability Executive, British Land said:

“British Land is proud to share this video with our partners FSC and Mace, as this brings to life our commitment to sustainability and how it drives our vision of creating Places People Prefer. Responsible sourcing is an intrinsic part of our supply chain operations and one of our key commitments in British Land's Supply Chain charter. Through this video, we hope to encourage others to follow our lead.”

Rob Dudley, Project Director for Mace, comments:

“British Land’s ambitious sustainability targets have been at the heart of this project. In practice, securing FSC certification for a site of this scale requires an open, organised and structured relationship with all of the trades that work with timber. It’s a fantastic result for the project. 5 Broadgate is a huge scheme, and we hope the video shows that there is no limit to the type of project that can achieve FSC project certification.”

© Forest Stewardship Council® · FSC® F000231