In the international business district of Brussels Airport, The Wings project is currently under construction: a remarkable development with an impressive building project focused on sustainability and spread over four wings or ‘quadrants’. The project has been awarded the triple certification BREEAM Excellent****, WELL Gold, and DGNB Gold. It’s a first for Belgium. Equans - in partnership with the company EDA – is in charge of a significant part of the electrical system. The design phase started in June 2022, with the final delivery of the entire project scheduled for June 2023.
Building owner Ghelamco aims to use The Wings to help balance work and well-being for users. Witness the extensive programme: office spaces, a hotel, a fitness centre, restaurants and coworking spaces, accounting for a total area of over 50,000 m² above ground supplemented by 40,000 m² underground.
Ernst and Young Belgium will take up residence at The Wings, housing its new headquarters there, which includes a business centre, a company restaurant, and a 600-space car park. In addition, the building programme includes a 250-room luxury hotel and an international coworking space for expats. A large atrium and a communal auditorium form the core of the complex.
First certified CO2-neutral office complex
Ghelamco aims to make The Wings the first certified CO2 and energy neutral office complex in Belgium. For example, the building itself will generate the energy needed for all internal activities and facilities. Fossil fuels are no longer involved. As much as 420,000 litres of rainwater is collected as part of sanitary reuse and garden maintenance. Intensive green roofs and two large wadis act as buffers in this regard. These and other interventions have enabled the project to obtain triple certification: BREEAM Excellent****, WELL Gold and DGNB Gold: these certifications reward intelligent and sustainable infrastructures. Occupants will benefit from unprecedented comfort and performance.
From electricity to sprinklers and lighting
Equans is responsible for the electrical system. The Equans team is responsible for the design of all circuit boards, the emergency power system, and the lighting with intelligent control. Furthermore, Equans is handling the practical implementation in one wing and the hotel area.
From the main distribution boards, the project includes the following tasks for Equans: installing the circuit boards, installing the cableways and sockets, pulling power cables to the various premises, and connecting the various elements to be powered.
Fire detection and sprinkler system
In addition to the electrical systems, the Equans Fire Protection service is also working on this impressive project. The building complies with all safety norms and standards. The team is responsible for the elaboration of the sprinkler system and the tasks also include access control, videophone, fire detection, and emergency lighting.
Fire detection is provided in floors, rooms, and false ceilings using various techniques, such as detectors and aspiration, with the atrium being the most complex room because of its height and large glass dome.
The sprinkler system is equipped with an electric pump fed by an emergency generator from Equans in case of a power failure. The system is divided into four zones, with one checkpoint per wing. Those checkpoints consist of a universally monitored check valve that triggers an alarm so the user knows in which wing the sprinklers have been activated. The alarm system is linked to the building management system and the fire detection system. A fun detail: the sprinkler pipes on several levels are not in standard red, but rather in RAL colours adapted to the end customer’s design.
Access control and videophone systems
In addition, the entire complex is equipped with access control and videophone systems. The complexity of the operation lies in the integration of multiple systems required by different tenants. These systems must work together in a secure way but, at the same time, they must also handle and shield the data of the various tenants and the building owner with the necessary privacy.
Your technical partner for a future-proof building
The building of the future is flexible and versatile, but above all, it focuses on the well-being and development of its users. As a real estate developer or manager, you are constantly faced with the challenges of today and tomorrow. Equans is the technical partner of choice to help you realise your ambitions. Thanks to our multidisciplinary offer, we provide a complete range of solutions for high-performance and energy-efficient buildings that are comfortable, connected, safe and sustainable.