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Peaks & Plains Housing Trust has installed a communal heating system to its £3.7 million Hunters Gate development in Handforth, Cheshire.  The project consists of 36 two-bedroomed apartments built to offer tenants affordable and energy-efficient homes.

The new system is made up of five Mitsubishi Electric Ecodan® CAHV air source heat pumps, providing the properties with a total of 200kW of renewable, cost-effective underfloor heating.  It also takes care of the tenants’ domestic hot water requirements whilst keeping the Housing Trust’s carbon emissions to a minimum.

“To achieve Level 4 of the Code for Sustainable Homes the apartments had to demonstrate a 44% reduction in carbon emissions over the levels required by the 2006 Part L building regulations,” said Ian Foden, Design Engineer with Manchester-based EDP Design Consultants, who designed the system.  “Using Ecodan CAHV air source heat pumps we achieved a reduction of nearly 60% because this technology is extremely efficient when specified and installed correctly.”

The Ecodan CAHV air source heat pump monobloc system can operate singularly, or form part of a multiple unit system and its scalability makes it ideal for projects of any size.  Its ability to work independently or in conjunction with other technologies gives developers complete flexibility when designing and specifying building services.

“Although the system is communal, tenants have complete control over their own apartment and can select their own temperature,” explained Nick Allpress, Contract Engineer with Coolair, who specified the new system and supplied the equipment.  “The Ecodan system offers developers a viable alternative to traditional heating.”

Mitsubishi Electric’s Ecodan CAHV systems are eligible for financial incentives under the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) – an internationally recognised quality assurance scheme, supported by the Department of Energy and Climate Change.

“Energy bills take a big slice of the household budget these days,” said Loveday Gimson, Development Officer for Peaks & Plains Housing Trust.  “With energy costs on the rise, one of our top priorities was to develop homes that would help tenants manage their outgoings and avoid the fuel poverty trap.

“We’re incredibly proud of what we have achieved with Hunters Gate and I have no doubt our tenants will be happy here.  Knowing they can afford the necessities of life, such as roofs over their heads and warmth when they need it, adds to our tenants’ quality of life.”

A full energy monitoring package has been installed on site to track the system and report live data remotely.  This enables the Trust to keep a check on how the system is performing for their tenants.

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