Hull schools opt for modular

Apr 20, 2012 | Cables and Accessories

Two new multi-million pound schools in Kingston-upon-Hull, Humberside, are to be fitted with modular wiring systems from Apex Wiring Solutions

After winning an undisclosed contract, Apex Wiring Solutions will manufacture and supply the modular wiring systems for the Northern Academy and the Andrew Marvell Business and Enterprise College (AMBEC) – two new schools currently under construction in Humberside. The contract will see pre-wired distribution boards, fully pluggable lighting and small power installed throughout.

Both schools are part of the Hull Building Schools for the Future programme – a £465m public/private partnership being delivered by construction and infrastructure business, Morgan Sindall, with the aim of providing new educational facilities as part of a city wide social and economic regeneration initiative.

The project, which will be carried out by an Apex approved contractor, will see more than 30 pre-wired distribution boards and over 25,000 metres of lighting and power pre-wired cables installed prior to September 2013 when the schools are due to open.

On time and on budget

Research on behalf of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors has revealed that only 63% of site-based construction projects are delivered on time and only 49% are delivered to budget. Therefore, off-site modular construction represents a step change in how buildings are designed and built because they make the process quicker and more cost effective.

Apex has used the latest software to design a bespoke system which will cut on-site electrical installation times and waste, providing a flexible pre-assembled power distribution and lighting system on time and within budget as part of the overall multi-million pound build programme.

All the modular components will be produced and quality checked and tested at the company’s Durham manufacturing facility before being supplied to site ready for installation.

Dave Lewis, managing director of Apex Wiring Solutions, said that a modular approach delivers significant improvements over hard wired systems, reducing on-site installation times by up to 70%.

Lewis commented, “The Hull Building Schools for the Future is another major contract win for us.

“The time saving and environmental benefits of modular wiring systems are becoming increasingly recognised in the UK, enabling electrical contractors to complete even the most complex installations quicker and more efficiently than ever before.”

Building evolution

This view was echoed by Jim Marner, national pre-construction director at Shepherd Engineering Services (SES), the company overseeing the mechanical and electrical engineering work, who insisted on selecting optimal build solutions at the front end of all projects.

He said, “The strategy is making an evolutionary change to what the construction industry accepts as the norm. We are intent on improving efficiencies, driving out waste and most importantly adding long term value to our clients. After very close scrutiny, the Apex modular wiring system ticked all of these boxes.

“Our strategy for this and all other projects is to utilise products and systems delivered to site already pre-assembled and tested because of the improved quality control and reduced installation times provided.

“Modular wiring is a superb build methodology that we will continue to design and install into our projects.

“The off-site manufactured wiring solution allows us to carry out smart engineering and co-ordination at the front end, avoiding the problems often associated with installing a traditional hard wired system on a construction site.

“The end user on both the Northern Academy and Marvell Business and Enterprise College are the priority and SES, together with Apex, will give certainty to our installation periods and most importantly, leave behind a legacy of a quality installation that can be easily maintained throughout its whole lifecycle.”

Apex has also provided systems to over 50 PFI and ProCure21 schemes totalling more than two million square metres. These include the new Royal London and St Bart’s hospitals, and the modular wiring for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games’ International Broadcast Centre and new Athletes’ Village.

Apex Wiring Solutions

T: 0191 378 7900