Suffolk Energy-from-Waste development at Great Blakenham collects Civic Trust Award
The Suffolk Energy-from-Waste facility near Ipswich is among the construction projects honoured in the 2017 Civic Trust Awards.
A total of 45 schemes, selected from among a total of 247 applications, received awards or commendations at the ceremony, held this year in Winchester.
The Civic Trust Awards are the longest-established architectural and built environment awards programme in Europe, having first been held in 1959.
They aim to recognise the best in architecture, urban design, planning, landscape, public realm and public art, with successful projects deemed to have made an outstanding contribution to the quality and appearance of the built environment while offering social, cultural, environmental or economic benefit to the local community.
The engery-from-waste facility at Great Blakenham is capable of processsing 269,000 tonnes of domestic waste a year to generate 20megawatts of electricity – enough to power 30,000 homes.
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Besides reducing the volume of waste going to landfill the process also reduces greenhouse gas emisssions by around 75,000 tonnes a year with the ash left behind being recovered and sold for reuse in building products.
The award citation says: “The facility stands as a striking innovation in industrial architecture and creates a balance between infrastructure, nature and community with a state-of-the-art visitors’ centre and considered bio-diversity on site that complements its sensitive setting, and challenges the traditional perception of buildings of this type.”
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It adds: “A considerable effort to ensure that local labour was employed wherever possible during construction saw over 100 local firms win contracts, worth around £13.5m, to supply goods and services to the site.
“The local community also benefit from support and donations from the SITA Trust which provides funding for community and environmental improvement projects within a three-mile radius of the site. Over £500,000 has been given to Suffolk projects in the last four years.”
The facility was designed by London-based Grimshaw Architects for waste management company SITA UK, part of French utility group Suez Environnement.
The main contractors for the project were Lagan Construction and CNIM, with Land Use Consultants as landscape architects, Tata Steel as structural engineer and RPS as planning consultant.