Vital Energi is implementing a range of low-carbon energy solutions at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, in an £11.2 m contract which it says will reduce Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s carbon footprint by approximately 1,400 tonnes annually, and deliver financial savings.
The energy distribution and energy services specialist is undertaking ‘comprehensive upgrades’ to the external fabric and windows of all four sides of the hospital’s Tower Block – from the ground floor up to the 11th floor – which will significantly reduce heat loss through the building fabric and glazing units, meaning lower energy usage and reduced carbon emissions. The 1970s-built concrete Tower Block building is one of Gloucester’s most visible buildings.
Vital Energi said: “The Tower Block upgrade works will enhance the patient and staff experience, through increased natural light, improved ventilation, and lower external noise levels, while the two-toned façade panelling will drastically improve the building’s
aesthetics. The existing windows will be replaced with contemporary tripled-glazed variants, and the heating systems be improved, which will help optimise the temperature across the building.” The project also includes the installation of a 200 kW air source heat pump, which will provide low carbon heat to the hospital, and upgrades to the heating and hot water controls systems.
Jen Cleary, head of Sustainability at Gloucestershire Managed Services, said: “We launched our Green Plan last year with the aim of making our NHS hospitals carbon neutral by 2040 in line with national policy. That’s a hugely ambitious goal, and this programme is a significant step in that journey."
Development Engineering Manager at Vital Energi Utilities, Rolf Hudson, said: “We’re really pleased to be working on our second round of PSDS projects with the Trust, assisting its journey to Net Zero carbon by 2040 under a new long-term EPC. We’ve designed an optimum solution to significantly reduce the hospital’s carbon emissions and energy bills, as well as provide increased levels of staff and patient comfort.”
Deborah Lee, the Trust’s CEO, added: “This investment will not only provide significant environmental benefits, but will also enhance the aesthetic appearance of the Tower Block, bringing with it those softer associations such as improved morale, staff recruitment and retention, and a better public perception of our hospitals. The investment comes on top of an existing capital programme of over £100 m, which is enabling us to realise our vision for centres of excellence at our Cheltenham and Gloucester acute hospital sites.”
The project received grant funding from PSDS Phase 3a, and will be delivered through the Carbon and Energy Fund Framework, which was specifically created to fund complex energy infrastructure upgrades for public sector organisations. The construction and engineering works are due to commence this March.