Government funding helps college to replace BMS to reduce energy consumption

Priva, BMS, controls, Salix
The building management system at the City of Bristol College’s Orpen Park Centre has been replaced with a remotely accessible Priva system.

Salix funding has been used to enable the City of Bristol College’s Soundwell and Orpen Park Centres to improve energy efficiency and DEC (Display Energy Certificate) rating by replacing an aging building-management system. This Government-funded scheme for public-sector organisations recently made £1 million available for projects that could be completed in the following four months. Similar interest-free loans of up to £100 000 are available via the Carbon Trust to private- and third-sector organisations.

The new Priva system makes possible remote access and was installed by Novac Control Systems.

Steve Ramsden, building-services engineer at the college, explains, ‘When the opportunity to apply for Salix funding arose, it was a natural step for us to retrofit the BMS with a new system. We have been actively looking for ways to reduce energy use on site, particularly in light of recent legislation that compels us to make public the building’s energy use through a Display Energy Certificate. Our previous BMS was an unreliable 1970s set-up that has become obsolete and definitely did not fit in with our current energy-conscious ethos.’

To secure Salix funding, it was established that the new system would save carbon at a cost-effective rate and achieve payback within five years. The bid was approved in just over a month.

Whereas the old BMS was timer-controlled, the new Priva system provides flexible control of heating and lighting, giving much improved energy management.

One of the features that drew Steve Ramsden to the Priva technology was the ability to remotely monitor and control energy use at both centres.

The Priva system has also made possible the conversion of a sports hall in the Soundwell Centre into a high-spec training kitchen, with operational gas consumption — whereas the old system was unable to manage this type of energy use.

For more information on this story, click here: January 2011, 136
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