Building with Nature


CEC offers developments the ability to achieve a new benchmark for the design and maintenance of green infrastructure, in housing and commercial development.

Building with Nature (BwN) has been designed to support the creation of high-quality green infrastructure throughout the planning and development process. Green infrastructure includes parks, play areas, nature reserves and street trees, as well as rivers, ponds and other Sustainable Drainage Schemes (SuDS). CEC is a trusted consultancy delivering BwN designs and has the largest team of BwN assessors in the South West.

Why do developments need the Building with Nature benchmark?

  • Opportunity to de-risk the planning process for new developments by following a quality standard
  • Helps to meet policy requirements
  • Potential to reduce objections from members of the public
  • Improved outcomes for water management and public safety
  • Works efficiently with nature to make the most of the opportunities on site to benefit people’s wellbeing, wildlife and the water environment

CEC’s ecologists and landscape architects can work with you to design BwN spaces. We can also provide assessments ready for the BwN accreditation assessment. 

How does it work?

There is a set of core standards, which define the basic approach to green infrastructure. They include alignment with the local policy context and a commitment to long-term maintenance.

BwN offers a framework of standards divided into four themes: core, wellbeing, water and wildlife. To achieve the accreditation, schemes need to deliver high-quality green infrastructure, delivering benefits within the boundary of the scheme; and where possible, demonstrate these benefits extend beyond the boundary of the scheme.

We have a track record of helping our clients to achieve BwN accreditation for their developments.

If you are interested in a BwN assessment or accreditation for your development, or have any questions about the benchmark award, please get in touch with Natasha Collings-Costello or Jenny Stuart on telephone: 01872 245510 or email

If you require any further information, please call us on 01872 245510 or contact us to discuss your project and requirements.


Natalie Duley-Moore MEnvSci (Hons) MIEMA CEnv
Principal Environmental Consultant
Arcadis Consulting (UK) Limited
“This was a complex project, carefully managed by CEC to ensure that the various surveys were undertaken on schedule, and that outputs and reports were completed in good time to meet project milestones. CEC’s pro-active approach helped the project team to ensure that ecological requirements were incorporated into the scheme design from the start. We are delighted that the project achieved the Building with Nature Design award, and that outline permission has been granted. CEC are still an integral part of the project team, as LGV progresses through Reserve Matters Applications, supporting the client by ensuring surveys and ecological conditions are discharged to allow works on site to progress without delay.”

Interested in how we can help?

We’re always happy to chat and share our experience; get in touch and let’s chat about your project, and we’ll help you to move forward.