Helec hands over pre-packaged plant room at Berol Yard, North London

Helec Limited has handed over an “EnSmart” pre-packaged plant room energy centre to The Formation Group’s Berol Yard residential new build scheme in Tottenham in North London. Work on the project had begun in March 2020 and continued – off-site and socially distanced – throughout the pandemic. The Helec team designed and built a complete plant room and delivered it to site and into position in three main sections.

Helec Ltd is an M&E specialist in the specification, design and build of full pre-packaged plant room solutions. Having already worked with Helec before, Formation Design & Build Limited had decided to task the company with this project in February 2020. However, by 23rd March 2020, halfway through the project, the Coronavirus pandemic struck and the UK went into lockdown. The team were faced with a challenge: how to ensure they could safely continue building the whole plant room off-site and avoid slowing down Formation Design & Build Limited’s programme of completing the 167 apartments? By this time the main shell and the core build stage of the new residential complex was well under way.

As Helec had already committed to procuring the main bulk of mechanical and electrical equipment and pipework components before travel restrictions started affecting supply chains, the local build team were able to safely continue working within a “local bubble”, building the sub frames and boiler skids, along with all the required duty pump sets, water filtration kit and all the electrical plug and play connections.

Helec’s “EnSmart” pre-packaged plant rooms are designed and constructed off-site, ready to be installed into ready-to-receive plant room areas at the site, with minimal additional works prior to the initial commissioning process. This reduces the need for “hot works” and the number of staff required on site, and any potential health and safety hazards. Additional benefits of off-site construction are the reduction in the number of deliveries to a restricted location, meaning there is also less noise and reduced NOx pollution on site from delivery vehicles. This in turn reduces the impact on the local area during the construction programme, as well as the risk of damaged goods by working within a controlled environment off site.

Pre-packaged plant rooms can be produced in any size, from small single section enclosures up to ‘multi-module’ containerised enclosures up to 40m long and 20m wide. Upon build completion, the “EnSmart” plant room is set into place, generally in the restricted basement area, and the rest of the building can then be constructed up around it floor by floor. Eventually, as each floor is completed, the apartments space heating and domestic hot water services are delivered via heat interface units fitted in each apartment.

Jonathan Passmore, UK Technical Sales Manager at Helec Ltd, said: “The Helec pre-pack build team are proud to have built and delivered a pre-packaged off-site construction project during the Coronavirus lockdown, pulling out all the stops in these unprecedented times to deliver a safe future for the HVAC sector and keep the construction economy going.”

Stephen Byrne, Contract Manager at Formation Design & Build Limited, said: “We are delighted once again to have delivered for our client in the current climate, it has been a challenging twelve months for all companies but it is testament to Helec’s mentality to find a solution and complete the project within the agreed timescale.”

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