SCOTTISH Water’s £130m Glencorse Water Treatment Works has gone into service on schedule and under budget. Designed and constructed by Black & Veatch, it provides a drinking water supply for 450,000 people across Edinburgh and parts of Midlothian and its capacity to meet future demand also contributes to the region’s economic growth.
Sustainability and community have been at the project’s heart throughout according to Mike Barcroft, Black & Veatch’s client centre director for Scotland. “We sought to deliver more than just a sound engineering solution. The company recognised the bigger picture – the needs of the public and the environment – and incorporated them into the way we acted as a partner to Scottish Water.”
Throughout planning, design and execution, measures were taken to minimise impact. The size and visual impact of the works were reduced significantly through the contractor’s choice of treatment process.
Using grass roofs for the largest structures also helped blend the works into its surroundings. Producing pipes adjacent to the site cut costs and carbon emissions in addition to making construction safer and easier.
Installation of a hydro-turbine generates a third of Glencorse’s energy needs on-site from a renewable source while reusing earth excavated on site for landscaping helped to cut 75% of all construction traffic.
The new facility is a replacement for the Fairmilehead and Alnwickhill WTWs which, after serving the city for more than a century, are at the end of their working lives. Achieving this required design and construction of a new works on a greenfield site 7.5 km from Edinburgh.
Also included are treatment systems housed in a partly-buried structure and a separate building for the inlet. There is also a 90-megalitre reinforced concrete clear water tank. Twin 7.5 km pipelines carry treated water from the WTW to the city.
“Glencorse has earned Considerate Constructors and CEEQUAL environmental awards. I think this reflects the effort Black & Veatch has made to ensure those working on the site and our neighbours are looked after to the highest standards,” added Barcroft.
In 2009 Paul Jowitt, then president of the Institution of Civil Engineers, also acknowledged what was being achieved. He described Glencorse as “not only an exemplar project in terms of critical infrastructure, but also in terms of sustainable development and carbon reduction, both in terms of construction and operation”.