Using composite drainage pipes has reportedly saved around 20 days of construction time at a building site in Dalkeith, Scotland.

Drainage specialist Aquaspira was asked to supply the pipes to replace concrete manholes. To avoid carrying out around 315 m3 of excavation, the 1800mm and 1200mm pipes could be installed using a ‘push-fit’ solution.

“We were able to rethink the entire approach to construction of the drainage at this site,” said Mark Stanway, director. “We were able to reduce the number of vehicle movements to site by 60%, as well as cutting the amount of bedding and backfill by half.

“Our access units also reduced the installation of each manhole from an average of four days to around an hour, delivering dramatic cost and timing savings to the job, as well as providing a far more environmentally friendly and safer solution.”

According to GBSS Civils and Plant Hire Ltd, which installed the pipes, the pipes were much easier to handle and install than similar size concrete pipes.

“This project demonstrates how innovative construction techniques can contribute to making developments more sustainable and are in line with the council’s commitment to be carbon neutral by 2030 as outlined in our Climate Change Strategy,” said local councillor, Stephen Curran.

Aquaspira says that it has also increased the amount of the recycled materials in its products and used solar power in the manufacturing process.

The company is working with the University of Birmingham to develop a digital twin to improve design and to investigate the use of recycled materials for backfill to reduce carbon usage in the construction sector and use sensors in pipes for long-term monitoring and maintenance.