One United Properties Fosters Community-Building Through Sustainable Development

Newsroom 24/07/2023 | 17:20

Urban regeneration is part of the DNA of One United Properties, the leading green investor and developer of residential, mixed-use, and office real estate in Romania. Ever since its early days, the company has been delivering projects with strong environmental and sustainability credentials, making sure that its buildings and communities of residents and tenants are harmoniously integrated in the urban fabric of Bucharest.


For One United Properties, everything starts with the goal of carrying out its development plans under the wider urban regeneration effort. This means that it builds on top of abandoned former industrial sites and transforms them into landmark communities. When vacant or neglected spaces are turned into vibrant mixed-use communities, they attract investment, increase property values, and contribute to the overall revitalisation and regeneration of the city, say the company’s representatives. Such developments include One Floreasca City, One Cotroceni Park, and One Herastrau Towers.

One Cotroceni Park

These are some of One United Properties’ flagship investments that are shaping the city’s efficient growth by promoting compactness, connectivity, sustainability, economic vitality, and community well-being. Its urban revitalisation projects also cover investments in restoring historical landmarks, an objective whose planned budget reaches EUR 70 million.


Sustainable development for long-lasting benefits

Throughout the years, One United Properties has strived to ensure that its developments provide tangible benefits to their residents.

“We incorporate energy-efficient design principles into our buildings to help reduce energy consumption and lower utility bills for residents, promoting long-term cost savings. Such is the case of the geoexchange systems that we’ve implemented in partnership with Veolia for developments like One Lake Club, One High District, One Peninsula, and One Lake District,” says Beatrice Dumitrascu, CEO of the Residential Division at One United Properties.

In a bid to ensure a healthier living environment, the company is also prioritising indoor air quality by using environmentally friendly building materials, proper ventilation systems, and filtration technologies.

“By integrating sustainable practices into our developments, we aim to create long-lasting benefits for residents, including reduced living costs, improved health and well-being, a stronger sense of community, and a positive impact on the environment,” Dumitrascu adds.

In the same vein, the company is implementing strategic sustainability principles in its mixed-use schemes, where the challenges are even bigger considering that residential units have to be combined with office and retail components.

Dumitrascu explains that such investments feature compact development patterns that reduce urban sprawl and encourage more efficient land use, as they maximise the utilisation of available space and reduce the need for excessive commuting.

“Residents enjoy the advantages of living, working, and accessing amenities within a walkable or short commuting distance. This reduces travel time and enhances overall efficiency, contributing to a better work-life balance and improving productivity for residents. We also focus on including educational units in our developments, as getting children to school every day is one of the factors that contribute to traffic in Bucharest. We want to provide our communities with all the amenities they need within a few minutes’ reach,” she adds.

As part of its vision, One United Properties will build two schools in the Tei and Plumbuita Lakes area in Sector 2 of Bucharest. The first educational unit will be located within the One Lake District development, while the second school will be built between the One Lake Club and One High District developments. The investment for the construction of the two private educational units amounts to around EUR 6 million.


Acknowledging the value of work-life balance

The developer’s offices are integrated seamlessly into projects that also have a residential component as this offers all the necessary conditions for real work-life balance and for people to truly feel as though they are part of a community.

“By including green spaces, walking paths, or fitness centres in the development, we encourage occupants to engage in physical activity and outdoor recreation, which can have positive effects on their overall health,” notes Mihai Paduroiu, CEO of the Office Division at One United Properties.

Furthermore, the mixed-use schemes are helping One United Properties create ecosystems around offices, which can adapt to occupiers’ various demands as part of the work-near-home trend. This may include co-working spaces, collaborative zones, informal meeting areas, and breakout spaces. Providing diverse work environments allows employees to choose the most suitable setting for their tasks and preferences, promoting flexibility, creativity, and productivity.

All these efforts have been translated into the “lifestyle at work” concept, which encompasses various facilities. “Having your office but also a gym where you can exercise right before or after work, a restaurant or a coffee shop where you can take a short break or have lunch with a business partner or a friend, a nice bar where you can go out for a drink after work all in the same building—these additional services that modern office buildings provide represent a great plus for companies that want to offer their employees not just a job, but an exclusive experience and a sense of belonging to a community,” Paduroiu adds.The company’s portfolio includes green buildings that have been properly certified for the benefits they provide to both occupiers and the environment. This is also a demand coming from companies that are looking for offices that can help them meet their own sustainability targets. One United Properties’ offices use efficient HVAC, lighting, and water conservation measures that can significantly reduce utility expenses and optimise operational costs.

“If a company’s priority is to have a healthier and more comfortable work environment, choosing a green building for office activities will lead to improved employee well-being and productivity. Tenant companies are increasingly recognising the positive impact that green buildings can have on their workforce, as healthier and happier employees tend to be more engaged and productive,” Paduroiu argues.

The developer is constantly working to secure the highest scores for its buildings in the certification process. The most recent success has been One Tower’s achievement of the LEED v4 Building Design and Construction certification, Platinum level from the US Green Building Council. This was a first for an office building in Romania.

The Office Division CEO at One United Properties concludes: “The LEED Platinum certification obtained by One Tower for the design and construction phase is accompanied by the WELL Health-Safety certification. Our desire is to develop sustainable buildings that offer a healthy work environment, with the latest integrated technologies and multiple benefits for tenants.”

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