SuDS design to future-proof housing developments
Located at the intersection of Oxford suburbia and the surrounding countryside, Barton Park was conceived as a garden suburb designed for the 21st century, a blend of high quality urban living in harmony with its natural surroundings. The development will be the largest new residential development in Oxford and the aim for Barton Park was to build an exemplar development that provides a benchmark for future large developments in the area.
However, in order to meet the stated objective of a net reduction in run-off volumes the designers realised that a significant volume of water attenuation capacity was required. The designers chose to design this as below-ground structure constructed using modular plastic geocellular units. Structures such as this are formed of two elements; the skin and the structural element. The skin in this instance was an impermeable geomembrane designed to prevent water escaping from, or entering into the tank (as the tank was for attenuation as the native soils were not suitable for infiltration).
The structural element consisted of a combination of Wavin AquaCell Prime and Plus geocellular units. These are high void (96%) structural units designed specifically for these applications. Prime were chosen as the primary material because their recycled polymer construction fitted the requirement of the sustainability engineer; the Plus product was selected because of its accessibility tunnel allowing entry for inspection and maintenance, a key requirement for the project engineers.
To achieve this the AquaCell Plus units are installed as rows within the structure forming a continual tunnel from one end of the tank to the other and is accessed through inspection chambers. Outflow from the tank was controlled by means of a flow control device located within a chamber on the outfall side of the tank. As the flow control device reaches maximum discharge the water then backs up within the tank and is held temporarily before being released at controlled discharge rate continuing after the storm event has finished. Using this tank design as resulted in around 3,000 cubic metres of attenuation capacity being integrated into the SuDS scheme for the development, helping protect the new residents from flooding now and into the future.
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