What Class A Office Building Really Means

2008-11-13   |  Elena Terzieva and Velimira Dimitrova, BULGARIAN PROPERTIES

Most newly-built business buildings in Bulgaria are advertised as class A buildings. The building must only have a suspended faηade, glossy common areas and open space premises and it is offered on the market as a luxury-class office building. Quite often the lessees and the buyers are not familiar with the details of the international standards and could be misled to think that they are renting or buying a class A office.

When all standards have been kept during the construction the difference can really be felt. This will be noticed both by the future clients and by the employees and the partners. The class A office buildings offer better comfort during work, easy access and hassle-free parking. These are only some of the elements which impress one in such buildings.

The main parameters that make an administrative building a class A building include:

BUILDING SYSTEMS

• BMS (Building Management System) – the centralized computerized system for installation and system management in the building. It controls and manages the energy consumption in the building, the access levels, signals in case of any break-downs and failures and decreases the management costs;
• HVAC system (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning System) – central ventilation, heating and cooling system which besides its main function (to heat and cool) leads out the air from the offices and replaces it with fresh air. The system also allows the setting of different temperature zones in the different parts of the office;
• There is a fire alarm system and a sprinkler system. The fire alarm system is a system, which upon the setting off of the alarm and the localization of the fire sets off the mini sprinklers which extinguish or limit the fire. The building also must have a fire-escape;
• Modern high-quality speed elevators of major international brands. One of the conditions is the waiting time for the lift to be less than 30 seconds;
• There should be two independent power supply sources with automatic change-over or a diesel generator power supply system emergency back-up; there should also be a UPS for emergency systems;
• Modern security system and access control (CCTV at all entrance points and parking, electronic card access, 24-hour security personnel).

BUILDING STRUCTURE

• Clear height 2.7 – 2.8 meters and over;
• Open space premises allowing maximum mobility regarding working place distribution, efficient layout;
• The common areas of the building should not exceed 12 percent.
• The load bearing capacity should not be less than 400 kg/m³;
• High quality materials should be used in the common areas and the faηade finishing;
• Raised floors under which are installed the high-voltage and low-voltage installations and which allows flexible and mobile distribution of the working points, as well as the possibility for their fast redistribution;
• Modern high-quality windows providing ample natural lighting.

LOCATION

• Good infrastructure in the area in which the building is located – main boulevard, easy access with the public transport and easy access to the building; absence of objects that could have a negative impact on the image of the building (functioning industrial buildings, cemeteries, dumps, etc.)
• Convenient vehicle and public transport access, i.e. 10-15-minute walk from the nearest station or an adequately organized shuttle-bus service.

PARKING

• Secured parking for the visitors and the employees, underground or multi-level, with covered way to the building; there should be a surface guest parking;
• There should be at least 1 parking space per 100 sq.m. total built-up area.

PROPERTY MANAGEMENT AND SERVICES

• The property management should be done by a professional management company with not less than 5 buildings in its portfolio or with relevant international experience;
• Optical fiber cable in the building connected to the republican network which ensures high-speed internet access and excellent communication connection;
• Effectively organized reception and lobby area offering easy access to the building;
• Professionally organized staff cafeteria adequate to the size of the building and the people working there; there should be at least two more amenities in the building (ATM, news agency, dry cleaning, shops, etc.); the infrastructure near the building should also be considered.

It is a fact that in Bulgaria there is shortage of office buildings that cover all class A requirements. The business centers that comply fully with the international requirements are very few.

In most cases the developers cannot comply to requirements like the number of parking spaces, easy access, professional management of the building, raised floors and double ceilings, etc. It is also recommendable these buildings to have a restaurant and a branch of a big bank. The design should be made by a reputable design studio as there should be memorable element in the design.

The prices in the class A business centers are higher than average but the execution of the conditions mentioned above guarantee higher productivity and more prestige for the company and are a main factor for attracting clients and partners due to the comfort the buildings offer.

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Copyright: 2008 Bulgarian Properties Ltd. All rights reserved. For further information or advice please contact us on tel.: +359 2 9 11 50 or e-mail: info@bulgarianproperties.com. The use of this article by third parties is allowed only with proper quotations of the source www.BulgarianProperties.com and the Author of the article. The data in this material has been collected by the Author and Bulgarian Properties Ltd. and is presented for information purposes only. We have made every effort to ensure the accuracy of the data. However, Bulgarian Properties Ltd. cannot be held responsible for loss or damage as a result of decisions made based on the information presented in this article.
© Bulgarian Properties Ltd. 2008.


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