Environmental Certification

Today, to reduce negative environmental impact, efforts are made to create urban environments and buildings that are as sustainable and environmentally conscious as possible. This is especially important in new districts such as Ártúnshöfði and Elliðaárvogur, which are in close proximity to delicate ecosystems and are located right by the city’s major outdoor recreational area. Therefore, efforts will be made to secure a BREEAM environmental certification for the Ártúnshöfði and Elliðaárvogur land use plans.

The certification is based on the international assessment system developed by BREEAM Communities which defines standards for environmentally conscious planning. The assessment system is built on the following five classifications: public consultation and management, social and economic prosperity, resources and energy, land use and ecology, transportation and recreation.

Ólöf Kristjánsdóttir, transportation engineer M.Sc.,
professional director of transportation at Mannvit (BREEAM
Communities assessor)

Setting this standard is intended to help the designers, developers and planning officials to improve, assess and independently verify a neighbourhood’s sustainability during the design and planning stages.

These five classifications stipulate standards for a variety of factors that are assessed during the planning process. They take into account factors such as public consultation, green and open areas, transportation, ecology, energy usage, pollution, health and wellbeing, land use and the processing of waste and surface waters – to name a few examples.

A BREEAM Communities assessed land use plan also lends support to BREEAM building assessments – should an assessment be sought for specific buildings in the future.

For more information on BREEAM go to

Environmental certification BREEAM

Environmental certification for planning is processed in steps.

BREEAM subject categories

When the environmental certification is processed, these five subject categories are reviewed and the planning graded.