IMO will be fully operational, once again, from its Headquarters on 's Albert Embankment, following a 20-month period in temporary accommodation while the Headquarters building underwent major refurbishment.
The first major meeting to be held in the refurbished Headquarters will be the 84th session of the Maritime Safety Committee (7 to 16 May) and the building will be formally re-opened in a special ceremony in mid-June to coincide with the 100th session of the IMO Council.
Although the IMO building is largely unchanged externally, internally the changes are dramatic. IMO staff and delegates to the Organization's meeting now have a building that reflects the very latest technological, IT and communication facilities of the 21st century and which also incorporates state-of-the-art safety, security and occupational health features. Enhanced meeting, office and catering facilities for both delegates and staff have created a modern workspace to meet the Organization's current and future needs.
Against a background in which environmental concerns have moved to centre-stage, not only on the list of global concerns but also in IMO's own work program, the Headquarters building has had its own environmental performance enhanced. The majority of the original mechanical and electrical main plant and systems have been replaced with modern, high-efficiency equipment to reduce energy consumption, improve efficiency and to protect IMO's business continuity with improvements in reliability.
A new building management system allows central control and monitoring of all the mechanical and electrical plant and systems, thus improving performance monitoring and identification of defects.
Additional insulation has been installed in roof areas to reduce heat loss through the building fabric and an energy-efficient lighting control system has been fitted. High-efficiency fittings and controls have been installed and detectors fitted such that, when rooms are unoccupied for a period of time, lighting will automatically switch off.
It was in 2005 that the IMO Council first agreed to the 's proposal - as host Government - for a major refurbishment of the Headquarters building. The original intention had been for a two-phase project but, in the event, the entire refurbishment has been completed in a single phase, thereby considerably reducing disruption and consequential costs.
IMO's full postal and visiting address reverts to:
4 Albert Embankment
All current telephone and fax numbers and e-mail addresses remain unchanged and post sent to the temporary address will be re-directed.