Newcastle Energy Centre

The Newcastle Energy Centre on the site of the former Newcastle Brewery commenced operations in late 2019. The building forms part of the wider Science Central development in partnership with Newcastle City Council and Newcastle University. The building is a two-storey steel framed district energy centre, providing heating and cooling for the wider Science Central site with the ambition to expand its range significantly in the future.

The energy centre was built on a challenging site as the ground levels vary considerably, with a fall of approximately 6m from west to east. The site is also located in an area of historic coal mining, with coal seams and redundant mineshafts confirmed as being present in the soil strata beneath the site.

Fairhurst was commissioned by developer Engie, who purchased the land from Newcastle City Council and developed the initial concept design in-house before appointing the consultant team.

Due to the constrained nature of the site, being located between two live highways and the requirement for a sub-basement level, we designed a secant piled wall around the west perimeter of the site to ensure that the stability of the roads was not affected by the works.

A primary steel structure with a feature cladding system and a 44-metre-high chimney was developed with careful consideration of plant loading and vibration onto the structure.

Upon completion, this project also won the following awards:

  • Structural Awards – Most Sustainable Project
  • Infrastructure Award