Articles & Case Studies

United Utilities Gives Victorian Main a ‘New Blue’ Makeover

Posted: Thursday 21st June 2012

United Uitilities has specified Excel New Blue PE pipe from GPS PE Pipe Systems for the last of three Victorian mains renewal programmes in Huyton, Liverpool, following the success of Excel pipe in the previous sliplining project.

The three cast iron mains have been subject to leaks and bursts over the past few years, leading to United Utilities’ decision to invest £7 million in sliplining the first 44” main with GPS’s Excel pipe four years ago. Severe flooding in July 2011 has led to the decision to invest further £7.6 million to refurbish the remaining 40” and 36” mains in a two phase programme that began last September. Phase 1 of this project has now been completed with the successful joint replacement and internal sealing of the 40” main and phase 2, comprising refurbishment of the 36” main with Excel New Blue, will commence in April.

Explains Ian Smith, GPS Regional Manager for North: “All three of these Victorian mains run beneath very busy public roads and our pipes provide an ideal solution to avoid open cut replacement, minimising potential disruption while providing a service life in excess of 100 years. Since the first project four years ago, GPS has developed Excel New Blue, a blue PE100 pipe with a core of black PE. This pipe is just as flexible and durable as standard Excel, but creates less waste and uses less energy to produce, so it will help United Utilities reduce both the cost and environmental impact of this third project in Huyton, while providing the same high level of performance.”

Contractor, Balfour Beatty, will use 4,400 metres of 800mm diameter Excel New Blue to slipline the 36” main and the structural support offered by the existing cast iron ‘host’ pipe will enable the use of a thinner walled pipe so SDR21 has been specified. The trenchless installation will involve just seven installation pits along the 4.4km route which will be dug in a rolling programme to minimise disruption that would be caused to traffic along the route. The first 950m will be sliplined in April, followed by a further 850m stretch of main in May and further sections over the following five months, culminating in the final pull in December 2012.

The work is part of United Utilities’ £3.6 billion programme to improve water quality across the North West by 2015.




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December 2018

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