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North West Cambridge Development

North West Cambridge Development

North West Cambridge Development will be the UK’s largest water recycling system once constructed. The 150 hectare site will include 3000 homes, 2000 student rooms, 100,000 square metres of research facilities and a wide range of community facilities. One of the key sustainability aspects of this development is to reduce freshwater consumption through water efficiency and the collection and recycling of rain water and wastewater.

Rain and surface water from the site will be collected in a series of specially designed lakes and naturally filtered through reed beds within the development. The water will then be refiltered, sterilised by UV and dosed with chlorine, before being used for non-potable water uses.

The development aims to reduce the average domestic potable water consumption to 80 litres per person per day, almost half the UK average. This achieved through the following measures:
• High efficiency water fittings including aerated shower heads and taps (also helping to reduce hot water demand), dual flush toilets, and low water consumption appliances where provided for both key worker and market housing.
• Rainwater collection taking water from roofs and filtering and storing it in underground tanks for non-potable demands, such as WCs. Systems may be communal for higher density areas, with individual systems for detached houses and larger commercial and academic buildings.
• Greywater collection and recycling for use in non-potable demands. A series of storage tanks combined with filtering and treatment stages will be incorporated across the site, with communal systems in higher density areas.
• Green leases will increase the likelihood that that all tenants will continue to behave in a water efficient manner.
• Water for irrigation of communal landscaping will be supplied from rainwater or greywater. Rainwater butts will be provided in domestic gardens.
• Smart water meters for most buildings to allow central collection of data and comparison.

In 2016, the North West Cambridge Development was named the runner up in the Built Environment category at the UK Water Efficiency Awards held by Waterwise.

Illustrative Masterplan – view from the south Taken from design and access statement