Hull district heating plans for city centre take next step

Plans to rollout a new multi-million pound district heating network in Hull have taken a step forward.

Please note that this article was originally published here by Hull Daily Mail

Plans to rollout a new multi-million pound district heating network in Hull have taken a step forward.

Three firms of expert consultants have been hired by Hull City Council to develop a detailed business case for the project. If given the go-ahead and with the necessary funding secured, it would see the construction of a new energy centre to supply heat and hot water to a number of buildings in the city centre via underground pipes.


In the long-term, the network could be expanded to include the cluster of buildings on the Hull Royal Infirmary site in Anlaby Road. As yet, the type of heat source likely to be used in Hull has yet to be decided.


Elsewhere in the UK, similar city-based projects being developed feature a range of sources, from spare heat generated by industry to hot fluid pumped from deep geothermal wells. Switching from using individual gas boilers in homes and work spaces to a single-boiler district heating system connected to a large number of properties is seen as way of reducing carbon emissions while delivering potential cost savings and higher efficiencies.


Martin Budd, the council's climate change manager, said: "The network is likely to be developed in a number of phases with the first phase focused primarily around public sector buildings. It would include the Guildhall estate and a number of other buildings as well as some regeneration sites. From phase one, it will move across the city centre from east to west and then potentially out towards the hospital as well."


Mr Budd said the consultants will be examining detailed technical and financial aspects of the proposed scheme. "They will look in much more detail at how we get heating into the buildings, they will review the heat options and make a recommendation on what type of heat we go for. They will also work out what the cost to the customer will be. " Mr Budd said a firmer cost estimate for the project and a likely procurement process would also be mapped out by the consultants.


A list of proposed district heating schemes around the UK published by the government earlier this year put the predicted cost of the Hull project at £18m. It described it as having the potential to heat both public and private sector properties via a network which would include crossing the River Hull to final distribution points inside buildings.


The current thinking is for the council to own the network through a subsidiary company.


Hull College's Energy and Climate Change Centre in Freetown Way also has ground source heat pumps to provide energy for both heating and cooling the whole building with additional energy being generated by rooftop solar panels. In north Hull, the Green Way Academy primary school was built in 2008 with ground source heat pumps.