|Case by Case
New! A warehouse heq style
LR Services is the logistics operator for McDonald’s. In 2006, it set up a new distribution centre from where it supplies the chain’s 167 outlets in northern France. With one defining feature: it is the first warehouse to comply with high environmental quality standards.
“At present, only residential buildings and those designed for service activities can be certified HEQ (High Environmental Quality). The management of LR Services therefore undertook a pioneering stance in adapting this environmental approach to a warehouse. Their initiative has moreover been the driving force behind a new set of criteria specifically for this type of building,” explains Ackli Assal, engineer at ADEME’s regional delegation in Picardy (France), one of the project partners. The new distribution centre will have a surface area of around 9,500 square metres.
Cold system and water management
The first step in the HEQ approach, the choice of a site, was based on the proximity to roads, relay antennas, power lines and distance from all housing. Of the 14 targets of the HQE criteria, LR Services focused on two in particular. Energy management first: the refrigeration needed to store foodstuffs accounts for 75% of the primary energy consumption for this type of centre. Technical solutions were studied to reduce the energy requirement while also cutting down the environmental footprint.
A refrigeration system using ammonia and CO2 instead of the usual CFC-based refrigerants was adopted. “This solution is more environmentally friendly, provides a 33% energy savings and has a life span three times that of standard installations,” explains Ackli Assal.
The second criterion on which LS Services focused was water management. Infrared-controlled taps and water-saving bathroom facilities help cut the centre’s overall consumption. All road surface runoff is treated in a hydrocarbon filter and can be returned to the aquifer without the slightest risk of pollution.
The building’s life span was another of the crucial aspects of this project. Thanks to the materials used and the techniques adopted, the building has a life span of 40 years, retaining all its environmental characteristics. This warehouse was built using a ‘clean site’ approach. Of the 153 metric tonnes of waste generated, 74% were recovered thanks in particular to all those involved being made aware of recovery and recycling through a best practices charter. These best practices are destined to be more widely shared as the construction of this centre was one of three pilot projects used to compile the ‘Warehouse’ HEQ criteria, the publication of the first version of which is expected in May.