Articles & Case Studies


Posted: Monday 14th December 2015

Notorious as functional fuel stops, Gloucester Services is seen to be raising the bar for motorway services; it provides a means of creating sustainable income, which goes back into the local communities. With sustainability high on its agenda, ACO Water Management’s surface water management products have helped create a sustainable drainage system that controls rainwater run-off while providing a high quality habitat for wildlife to flourish.

ACO worked with project designers BWB Consulting Engineers, and Principal Contractor, Buckingham Group Contracting Ltd. to deliver a sustainable drainage system that is able to cope with extreme weather events, while enhancing the environment through maximising bio-diversity and creating amenity areas to be enjoyed by all.

The manufacturer became involved with developing the design of the parking and access areas, as well as the landscaping which serves as attenuation for rainwater; supplying a selection of products including Kerbdrain and its acclaimed Qmax slot drainage system.

Tim Jones, the Principal Engineer for BWB has described it as the best project he has ever worked on, and commented: “I've been lucky enough to work on a number of prestigious projects in my time at BWB, but my favourite project so far would have to be the proposed Gloucester Gateway Motorway Services Area off the M5 which is nearing the end of construction.

GGMSA is a beautiful scheme on the edge of the Cotswolds with an extensive array of sustainable drainage, with features including green roofs, swales, bio-retention areas, filtration strips ultimately discharging to a proposed pond and wetland area. As far as motorway service areas go this has to be one of the best.”

The drainage strategy took a holistic approach, which linked together an extensive array of sustainable drainage features. For this, the solution has encompassed not just an integrated selection of standard and modified drainage solutions, but also a continuing involvement with the consultation and design process. The latter began back in May 2013 when the Buckingham Group supplied drawings to the manufacturer, requesting a site visit. This followed on from the two companies’ successful cooperation on the Michaelwood Service area, also on the M5.

Responding to the extensive scale of Gloucester Services and its SUDS system, ACO Water Management supplied 87 one metre long sections of its widely specified Kerbdrain, a combined kerb and drainage system, plus a further 720 of its matching 500 mm units, plus rodding eyes and gully tops.

Specifically designed and developed to form an integral part of any modern, sustainable surface water management solution, Kerbdrain is the first of its kind to use recycled materials and be independently certified and Kitemarked to BS EN 1433: 2002. The one-piece system is suitable for a wide range of applications including major and minor highways, car parks, and commercial and urban landscaping. For this project, the product was installed in the car park of the service station.

The design also called for 150 metres of ACO’s revolutionary Qmax 350 drains in two metre lengths, with integrated Ductile Iron Edge Channels. These were supplied with four Qmax 225/350 outlet chambers and five Swale inlets. There were specially adapted connections from the back of the Kerbdrain sections at intervals into the swale, and outlets to feed planters used to green the public areas around the service facilities.

Gloucester Services northbound opened during the summer of 2014 with the southbound MSA having opened this summer. The two facilities have been developed at a cost of £40 million and create play, picnicking and dog exercise areas as well as offering 265 car parking spaces plus 35 HGV bays. The project has created hundreds of jobs for local people and will serve local produce.

Read the magazine online

August 2021

About the magazine »
Magazine archive »


Information for advertisers »

Pulsar New Banner
Pulsar Button June 13 buttonwood marketing British Water Cranfield University Harvey Communications Water Aid Huber wateractive