Plumbing modules make light work of plumbing in Manchester Green Building
To enable plumbing work in the apartment block of the Macintosh Village development in Manchester to be staged, SAV developed pre-assembled controls centres for plumbing, heating and potable-water services based on its well-proven commissioning module. Sales director Jan Hansen explains, ‘There is no need to plumb out complete individual plumbing and heating systems in apartment blocks like the Green Building.’ Working with contractor N. G. Bailey, SAV’s technical team developed the modules, which were engineered off-site and supplied custom tailored for the project and individual areas, complete with all the manifolds and controls needed for domestic services and underfloor heating. The Green Building has a 10-storey inner ‘drum’ with 32 one- and two-bedroom apartments. The design by Terry Farrell & Partners also provides for a 120-place pre-school nursery, a doctor’s surgery and three floors of commercial accommodation. The Green Building utilises variable-flow systems. Where necessary, differential-pressure control valves are built in to create ‘mini’ systems that overcome high shut-off pressures and poor control authority at a fraction of the cost of the ‘macro’ approach. Integral energy meters enable individual units throughout the building to be monitored. The SAV plumbing modules have all their components pre-assembled on a steel back plate. They were wall-mounted in discreet locations as a first fix, with flow and return connections made later. As the Green Building entered its final phase, plumbing and heating services were balanced and commissioned from the modules. These modules also serve as a secure control and isolation centre to simplify maintenance and repair work.. For underfloor heating systems, SAV supplied all system components, including pipework and plumbing modules. Features include incorporating a shunt pump/temperature-control group with a fail-safe feature in the form of a mechanical bypass damper that makes it physically impossible for high-temperature water to be diverted into the underfloor circuit loops. The plumbing modules also incorporate SAV’s Alpha-Basis modular interface, complete with pump-control module. Each apartment has its own Alpha-Basis unit controlling two independent heating zones, each with its own thermostat. Alpha-Basis is designed to simplify the control wiring of underfloor heating by creating a single connection centre for all control functions. Quick clamps are used for all wiring connections, and every phase of the connection programme can be monitored.