Material Index undertakes pre-demolition audits, pre-refurbishment audits and pre-redevelopment audits using our digital platform. These audits and surveys can be undertaken at all stages of a site or building's life cycle, but typically take place prior to deconstruction or major refurbishment or redevelopment works. Undertaking an audit with Material Index is the first step in understanding the life cycle of key products, components and construction materials within a building, site or portfolio.
The Material Index audit process typically involves:
Visiting site and cataloguing building components digitally through platform
Login provided to online inventory provided to client and design team
Avenues for retain, reuse on site, reuse off-site and recycling via waste stream explored
Take-back and resale partners identified for components
Pre-demolition or Pre-redevelopment Audit issued for compliance with BREEAM and London Circular Economy StatementGet in touch
Material Index makes audit analysis and reporting easier, but exists primarily to promote circularity, allowing for more materials to be diverted from landfill through reuse on/off site, reclaim or recycling. The Material Index platform allows input from building and demolition contractors and project stakeholders to determine the circular economy pathway of materials during refurbishment, redevelopment and demolition aiming to lower the embodied carbon footprint of the construction and real estate industry.
Material Index audits are unique in that they do not just tabulate the amount of waste produced during deconstruction as material type (eg 4 tonnes of glass) but include a detailed ‘asset register’ of components more akin to the bill of materials produced in the construction phase (eg. 42 windows). All audits are produced using Material Index’s digital platform, which supports this component based approach to building analysis using proprietary datasets, but also facilitates easier and more collaborative working.
In the UK, pre-redevelopment and pre-demolition audits are often required at the planning stage with Circular Economy Statements to meet sustainability policy and BREEAM requirements. Material Index undertakes audits according to the BRE Pre-Redevelopment Waste Audit Code of Practice, using our proprietary platform allowing for all stakeholders, from owners, to designers, to building contractors to make effective use of the audit information.
At pre-application stage, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit an independent pre-demolition audit with all applications where demolition is proposed, as supporting evidence to their CE statement.
Pre-demolition audits and pre-refurbishment audits are surveys undertaken on existing buildings, precisely identifying the type and volume of materials that will arise as a result of deconstruction, and indicating the most environmentally sustainable ways of dealing with these materials according to the circular economy hierarchy. This means identifying which of the materials are remaining in place within a building, are being reused either within the scheme.
Material Index’s audits can increase the amount of material reuse in projects, divert more waste from landfill, and capture more value from the materials arising from deconstruction. They are often undertaken by conscientious real estate developers and asset managers to reduce their environmental impact, particularly the embodied carbon in construction, to meet their Net Zero goals while lowering waste costs and recovering value.
A pre-demolition audit is a detailed inventory of the materials in the building that will need to be managed upon demolition.
Material Index audits are unique in that they do not just tabulate the amount of waste produced during deconstruction as material type (eg 4 tonnes of glass) but include a detailed ‘asset register’ of components more akin to the bill of materials produced in the construction phase (eg. 42 windows). All audits are produced using Material Index’s digital platform, which supports this component based approach to building analysis, but also facilitates easier and more collaborative working.
Pre-redevelopment audits are typically undertaken at RIBA stages 1 and 2, prior to the completion of the full concept design and at pre-application planning stage. They are a ‘tool for understanding whether existing buildings, structures and materials can be retained, refurbished, or incorporated into the new development’ (CE statements 2022). A pre-redevelopment audit recognizes that within every structure there is embedded carbon, materials and energy and that efforts should be made to retain and recover this.
A pre-redevelopment audit should be undertaken by an independent third-party and explore options for retaining existing structures and materials on the site, or their use by third parties. It is not always possible to achieve, but renovation of existing buildings should be considered prior to substantial demolition, and substantial demolition should be justified.
Pre-redevelopment audits should include an overview of the existing structure, and targets for how the existing building elements can be recovered. These audits can be supplemented with a detailed breakdown of materials in the building included within the pre-demolition audit.
These audits meet the criteria for BREEAM environmental certification (BREEAM Wst01). A comprehensive audit can help achieve up to 4 BREEAM credits, including construction resource efficiency and the diversion of resources from landfill.
A comprehensive audit can help achieve up to 4 BREEAM credits
Material Index’s audits also meet the requirements of the GLA (Greater London Authority)/ReLondon’s Circular Economy Statements. Material Index provides data according to European Waste Codes, BREEAM waste codes, Uniclass component codes, according to building shearing layers.
Detailed information on material efficiency embodied carbon, residual valuation can also be provided alongside deconstruction advice and reuse pathways.
It is the ambition of Material Index to produce best-in-class audits to further the adoption of the circular economy in the construction sector.
Material Index audits are granular and digital, breaking the building down into its constituent components in order to facilitate maximum reuse and accurate environmental reporting. Materials are assigned a status according to the circular economy hierarchy. The audit involves a detailed visual inspection survey, supported by an analysis of existing records on the building. Material Index are digitally native, and can process dwg or Revit information, or from operations and maintenance manuals.
Typically our projects achieve a reuse rate 10 times that of the national average.
Audits are undertaken by independent, qualified experts in material reuse with backgrounds as certified architects or engineers. We have experience of working collaboratively with building owners, project managers, architects, demolition contractors and component resellers. We can export the audit information to environmental consultants to assist in whole-life cycle carbon analysis, and to environmental contractors to assist with Site Waste Management Plans.Get in touch
We provide our auditing platform to third parties, including demolition contractors, surveyors and designers.
For more information about licensing our digital tools or collaborating with Material Index, please reach out to email@example.com
Material passports are digital documents listing all materials in a building, supporting circular use and reversible design.
Simply put, a material passport is a digital document listing all the materials and their properties that are included in a product or a building. The information listed supports a circular use of building materials, products and components whilst supporting reversible design.
These audits are a necessary first step in material reuse, and identify future pathways for reuse.
Material Index offers a range of follow-on or stand-alone services:
If these are of interest please email firstname.lastname@example.org