Sustainability in construction – why is it important to build the buildings of the future today?
The construction and sustainable real estate development company “YIT Lietuva” has completed the main construction works of the Kaunas furniture factory company “Freda” factory and warehouse at the Kaunas Free Economic Zone (FEZ). It is planned that the “Gerų baldų fabrikas”, which has settled in the building of especially high (A++) energy efficiency class, will start its activities in March or April of this year. The oldest company of furniture industry in Lithuania has invested 42 million Euros in this project.
In a modern factory of 35, 6 sq. m., which is adapted to sustainable and ecological activities, a wide assortment of furniture shall be manufactured, and the products will be exported to various countries in the world.
According to the Director of the “Gerų baldų fabrikas”, Virginijus Brundza, the growing demand of furniture resulted in a necessity to expand the current production capacity of “Freda” and invest in modern solutions.
“The capacity of the current factory is not enough to meet the current demand of furniture; therefore, the expansion and the construction of the new factory was a natural step forward. The most important criteria that we raised to the newly built factory were functionality and sustainability. Our company pays great attention to our social responsibility and environmentally friendly activities, therefore, we sought for the new factory to be built and equipped in regard to these aspects. This is why the energy efficient heating and lighting solutions were adapted and the advanced manufacturing equipment was installed”, - says V. Brundza.
The assemblies, polyurethane insulation, assuring the tightness, were used when constructing the furniture factory, a biofuel boiler room and heat pumps, as well as an infrared heating system were installed. All this ensured the energy efficiency class of A++ of the building, which is still rarely achieved in buildings for productive purposes. It is planned for solar energy collectors to be installed on the roof of the companies’ laboratory, which is constructed in the territory of the factory.
According to the CEO of “YIT Lietuva” Kęstutis Vanagas, the industrial enterprises of Lithuania are paying more and more attention to the sustainability and effectiveness of their premises, and the oldest and one of the most successful furniture manufacturing companies in the country prioritised these aspects.
“We value the opportunity to develop buildings, which are modern and conform to the highest requirements of the client. We also notice, that companies pay greater attention not only to the sustainability and energy efficiency of their office buildings, but to the production and warehouse premises as well. This is greatly appreciated, since the modern industrial sector creates greater value and also contributes to the environmental awareness”, - notes K. Vanagas.
Currently, in a land site of 53, 3 sq. m. at Kaunas FEZ the last works of furniture factory and warehouse set up as well as site management are nearing to completion. It is planned that once the factory starts it operations, 240 new job openings will be created. It is also planned that in a period of 3-4 years, the production capacity of the furniture factory should reach 250 million Euros.
The main client of the company “Freda” is the Swedish furniture manufacturing and retail group “Ikea”. Over 550 employees are currently working in the company.