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Permeable Paving, Swales, Rainwater Recycling, Wessex Water Operations Centre, Bath

Introduction The Wessex Water Operations Centre is part of Wessex Water Ltd. It contains office buildings, an operations centre, car parks, roads and landscaped areas. It has large roofing and paved areas (approximately 75% of the site area).

Description The operations centre is a new building. Sustainable drainage, including surface and foul water, was designed at an early stage. Wessex Water Ltd was supportive of all water efficient solutions, attempting to demonstrate water savings. The project incurred additional capital costs compared to traditional drainage solutions. However, it is expected to generate significant lifecycle savings. The sustainable drainage solutions include: 

  • permeable paving in the car parking areas. Porous blocks transfer surface water run-off into soakaways and permeable grass paviors discharge via pipes into a storage tank 
  • a swale runs down one edge of the site and drains to the main storage tank from which water is pumped back to soakaway points and feeds an ornamental water feature 
  • rainwater and treated greywater are stored in 3 intermediate tanks and then used for toilet flushing 

Notable benefits of the drainage solutions include reduced flows into the surface water sewer and integrating swales and grass paviors into the landscape.

Project team Wessex Water Buro Happold Consulting Engineers

Further information

wessexwater.co.uk

www.circa.org.uk