Communal heating

Bringing Middlewood Locks back to life
How to add 25% to your investment

Middlewood Locks 1

It is an established fact that water-side developments attract premium values. When the regeneration of derelict land in Salford came under serious consideration, it was the proximity of the Manchester, Bolton & Bury Canal which proved attractive.

However, the Middlewood Locks stretch had been filled in long since and turned into a brownfield site, from the days of railway sidings, good sheds and an iron rolling mill. It was decided to excavate those stretches exposed to view, restore the canal locks and construct a whole new basin for narrow boats. What had been a view of dilapidated industry was transformed into a water-side vista with huge leisure time possibilities. Which is where the 25% uplift to expected sales came in! Project sponsors included the Scarborough Group (50%), Metro Holdings Singapore (25%) and the Hualing Group China (25%).

Communal Heating – Salford Style

With the total number of dwellings through several phases set to reach 2,215, it was important to set the project heating systems on a sound basis. Rather than use electric heating, encouragement was provided by funding from the Government’s Heat Network Delivery Unit (HNDU), to become a part of the proposed heat network corridor between Trafford and East Manchester. This formed the basis of conceptual design by M & E Consultant Buro Happold.

By SAV working in conjunction with M & E contractor HE Simm, the details of an efficient heat network were designed for Phase 1, numbering no less than 572 dwellings. Primary heat generation was by gas boilers in a centralised plant room, with heat distribution across the site based on 70˚C flow / 40˚C return.

HE Simm clearly recognised that reliability in the provision of heat and hot water would be hugely significant to user experience. It was also important that DHW temperature be controlled accurately at the tap and that delivery times remained acceptable.

Middlewood Locks 2
Middlewood Locks 3

Playing the Danfoss card

To provide heating and hot water to each apartment, SAV put forward their Danfoss 7 Series FlatStation HIU. This model has individual exchangers; the 7 kW rated radiator heating circuit has its own pump, with the DHW exchanger good to serve the 59 kW maximum expected rating for 3-bed apartments.

Thermostatic control valves for both circuits are shielded by DPCVs. This means that each control valve acts with maximum valve authority, producing the excellent response times associated with user comfort.

The 7 Series includes the mechanically actuated IHPT valve, which maintains DHW standby temperature at just 8˚C below set point. Delivery time on demand is then greatly reduced, with temperature being controlled within close limits.

Each HIU comes with an ultrasonic heat meter, to provide precision energy metering. Billing company ISTA advised that after 1 year’s operation, the heat tariff to residents is just under 7p / kWh, with a standing charge of 35 p/day. There is no question that this heat network represents a significant milestone in the fight against fuel poverty.