Project > The National Library of Wales

Decarbonising The National Library of Wales

The National Library of Wales’ Decarbonisation Project was born out of our continued relationship with National Museums Wales and the Welsh Government’s aim to achieve net zero emissions in the public sector by 2030. Situated within a Grade II* Historic Park and Garden, the National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth holds a prominent status as the largest library in Wales. Given its collection of over 6.5 million books and significant holdings, it is imperative to preserve the heritage of the Grade II* National Library of Wales while simultaneously reducing its carbon footprint.

Building for the Future

Building for the Future

As Lead Consultant, Project Architects and MEP Engineers, we are continuing to develop comprehensive strategies aimed at significantly decreasing the library’s carbon footprint and eliminating fossil fuel usage by 2028.

The core of the project involves replacing the library’s existing gas-fired boilers with Reversible Air Source and Ground Source Heat Pumps. This transition not only eliminates reliance on fossil fuels but also addresses both heating and cooling requirements. By utilising Reversible Heat Pumps, we can effectively manage heating and cooling loads, rendering the existing inefficient Chiller Units and 5MW Gas Boilers obsolete.

The integration of solar panels further enhances energy sustainability. With a surface area of over 3500m2, these panels produce approximately 700kW of energy, equivalent to 116,000 typical LED light bulbs.

The project extends beyond energy systems to include enhancements in building fabric and thermal insulation. This involves the installation of new windows and secondary glazing while respecting the architectural and heritage significance of the building. In areas of lesser architectural significance, new replacement windows will be integrated, while areas of greater significance will receive new secondary glazing and window repairs to maintain their integrity.

Preservation and Compliance

Preservation and Compliance

As a Grade II* Listed Building, meticulous planning and coordination has been essential. We are working closely with Planning and Listed Building Consent departments, ensuring alignment with local authorities and Cadw, the Welsh Government’s historic environment agency. Every design decision prioritises reversibility and de-commissioning, preserving the building’s integrity and enabling future adaptability.

Strong Relationships

Strong Relationships

For more than 25 years, DB3 has maintained a close partnership with National Museums Wales. Since 2018, we’ve been the exclusive providers for an Architectural and Principal Designer framework agreement, concentrating on addressing critical infrastructure and service challenges. In addition to our ongoing decarbonisation efforts at the National Library of Wales, we’re actively engaged in refurbishment projects at St Fagan’s National History Museum, The National Museum Cardiff and The National Roman Legionary Museum.

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DB3 Conservation & Heritage

DB3 Conservation & Heritage

Our experienced multi-disciplinary teams deliver specialist advice to clients on the strategic planning, renewal, regeneration, management and conservation of historic buildings, heritage sites and monuments.

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