Articles & Case Studies


Posted: Wednesday 27th April 2011

Engineers, GDM, has specified over 800 Waterloc250 cells from Marley Plumbing and Drainage to provide effective rainwater storage to the recently redeveloped Luton Sixth Form College.

Completed in August 2010, phase 1 of Luton Sixth Form College has been entirely redeveloped across 17,200m2 of playing fields adjacent to the site of the existing College. Funded by the Learning and Skills Council the new College comprises a completely new education building and sports facilities including playing fields, all weather pitch, tennis courts and hard and soft landscaping.

“To bring the College into the 21st Century, sustainability was key,” comments Terry Boswell of architects KSS. Therefore, the Waterloc250 cell from Marley Plumbing and Drainage was an ideal solution to provide underground storage for rainwater harvesting. The excess water that the Waterloc250 stores, will then be utilised for rainwater harvesting purposes, with the water supplied for toilet flushing via a separate pipe network within the building.

Marley Plumbing and Drainage supplied a total of 891 of its Waterloc250 cells which have been installed beneath the College’s new playing fields and wrapped in a waterproof membrane to form a tank providing a total volume of 222m3. Waterloc250 offers a sustainable and effective method of providing attenuation storage for stormwater run-off. 96% of the cell volume is available to store water, minimising the plan area and depth needed for the installation, whether the application is infiltration or attenuation.

“The style of Waterloc250 was key to a swift installation process,” comments the project manager at Spie Matthew Hall, the main installers on site. The innovative design of Waterloc250 allows for quick installation in layers, producing a secure tank, which can be configured to suit the area available.

Andrew Graham, Senior Infrastructure Engineer for Mott McDonald, Infrastructure Engineers for the development and who assisted with the design of the rainwater harvesting system, comments: “The unique modular nature of the Waterloc250 cell, allowing for nesting during transport, was a key reason for its choice. Apart from the environmental benefits associated with transporting significantly more units for the same stored volume as alternative units available on the market, the size of the units allows easy assembly by operatives. Even if the site conditions change, perhaps as a result of unforeseen constraints, the tank configuration can easily be revised whilst still achieving the required volume”

Finally Tony Whitehead the Colleges Internal Project Manager on behalf of Simon Kitchener the Principle at Luton College comments: “Specifying a rainwater harvesting system was essential to one of our main goals to achieve a BREAME Excellent rating. Amanda Stanley at GDM Partnership the M&E Consultant Engineers, recommended the installation of Marley for the space and installation time saving aspects with a view to offering the college flushing water usage cost savings and it is assumed to be able to pay back the capital plant costs in around 5 to 7 years.”

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