Innovative Engineering Solution Installs Pipework below Gt Howard Street

State of the art civil engineering techniques have been employed by Vital Energi to install district heating pipework 5.5 metres below the surface of Great Howard Street in Liverpool.

Using an innovative method, Vital Energi dug a 6 metre deep launch and receiver pit at either side of the key commuter route and then used a specialist hydraulic machine to bore the 32 metres between the two.  This allowed pipework for Peel NRE’s Mersey Heat district heating network to be installed without closing the road and avoiding significant disruption for the people of Liverpool.

Vital Energi’s Managing Director - Heat Networks, Ashley Walsh commented, “Due to the depth of the excavations an installation like this would normally close the road completely for approximately 15 weeks, which would have been disruptive for commuters and the people of Liverpool as it’s one of the main arteries into the city.  By utilising an innovative “pipejacking” method, we have managed to deliver a quality installation and keep the traffic moving, which was one of the core goals for us, Peel NRE and Liverpool City Council.”

This section of pipework is important as it will feed the Mersey Heat network from a new energy centre which gained planning permission last month, providing low-carbon heat and hot water for up to 9,000 homes and 4 million square foot of commercial space at Peel L&P’s £5bn Liverpool Waters development.

Mersey Heat is a ten-year project to help reduce carbon emissions and make the Liverpool a cleaner and greener city and we’re pleased to be delivering the first stages of the network using innovative technology and construction methods to reduce the disruption to the public.

Jonathan Burley, Commerical Director of Peel NRE
Liverpool Waters District Heating Pipes

The pipe network under Great Howard Street will also connect buildings at Stanley Docks to the Mersey Heat network including 540 homes at the newly converted Tobacco Warehouse followed soon by The Titanic Hotel & Rum Warehouse and Southern Warehouse. The initial phase has seen Vital Energi deliver 1.7km of buried district heating pipework and this will grow as the heat network expands into Liverpool City centre.

Solution detail