MediaCityUK CHP plant

Edina supplies and installs 2MWe combined heat and power (CHP) plant at Europe’s first purpose built creative and media development hub to reduce energy costs, carbon emissions and provide security of power supply.

Key benefits

  • Reduces fuel and operating costs
  • Improves site power security
  • Reduces carbon footprint – this will significantly assist the MediaCityUK’s carbon reduction commitment
  • Strong public relations and emphasis on environmental considerations
  • Reduces client’s reliance on the grid
  • Adds flexibility as thermal energy (heat or cooling) can be stored for use when needed

MediaCityUK creative hub powered by Edina 2MWe CHP plant

Edina supplies and installs 2MWe combined heat and power (CHP) plant at Europe’s first purpose built creative and media development hub to reduce energy costs, carbon emissions and provide security of power supply.

Based at Salford Quays in South West Manchester, MediaCityUK is Europe’s first purpose built creative and media development and is the UK’s largest construction project outside the Olympic Village.  Phase one covers an area equal to 18 football pitches and yet it only equates to one fifth of the land available for future growth.  Once fully developed MediaCityUK could utilise a total of 200 acres with the potential to provide more than 15,000 jobs and accommodate 1,000 businesses.  It is now home to the BBC following their re-location in 2011.


MediaCityUK is the first development in the world to become a BREEAM approved sustainable community and has achieved the highest environmental saving rating in the world through the use of a highly efficient low carbon site based tri-generation system for the local generation of heat, cooling and electricity which will save approximately 20,000 tonnes of CO2 per annum.


The bespoke energy management programme has also passed £850,000 in annual energy savings from measures taken across the estate.  Through this investment, MediaCityUK has avoided the production of 1,722 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent [CO2e] this year alone.

Derek Elliot, Head of Technical Services at MediaCityUK

MediaCityUK Power Plant

The total scheme comprises a 40MW trigeneration system simultaneously producing heat, cooling and power through a centralised Energy Centre – the basic principle of the installation. The power generated from the engine provides 2MWe to the site’s ringmain. The jacket water from the engine is used as Low Temperature Hot Water (LTHW) and the exhaust heat is recovered via an absorption chiller.

The Combined Heat and Power (CHP) engine, fuelled by natural gas, generates heat and electricity simultaneously whilst an absorption chiller creates chilled water from the recovered waste heat which circulates in a water jacket around the CHP engine. The simultaneous generation of energy coupled with the use of recovered energy means that the system operates with very high efficiency compared to traditional forms of energy generation. The Manchester Ship Canal provides the water for the system which is cleaned and returned at the end of the cycle.


The Energy Centre is designed in a modular fashion, to be installed in two phases as the MediaCityUK site develops to its full potential size. Vital Energi have handed over the first completed phase of the installation which includes two 9MW gas boilers, a 2MW CHP engine and a 1.5MW absorption chiller which will provide cooling to the BBC film studios.

Edina were chosen to provide the CHP engine based on the high electrical efficiency delivered by the MWM manufactured TCG 2020 V20 model which combined with a fully inclusive maintenance contract provides the lowest lifecycle operating cost.

The project commenced in August 2010 with Edina employing a dedicated site based Project Manager to coordinate the day to day responsibilities and to provide continuity of contact at site between all contracting parties and the client. Careful consideration had to be given to the stringent noise levels imposed.

The total system was commissioned and handed over to the client in April 2011 and achieves an electrical efficiency of >43%, with an overall system efficiency of > 87%.

Environmental issues are important today but, when the site is up and running in 2011, these issues will be all the more critical. We are working hard to make sure MediacityUK is future-proof by incorporating the very best environmental and sustainable credentials into every aspect of the development.”

Ed Burrows, Property Director, Peel Media.

Achieving Net Zero

In January 2020, property regeneration company and owner of MediaCityUK, Peel L&P became the first in the UK to achieve building net zero carbon status.

Grade A offices across Greater Manchester, Liverpool and an historic building in Glasgow have been third party verified against UK Green Building Council’s 2019 definition.

11 properties, ranging from 25,000 sq ft to over 120,000 sq ft, including buildings in TraffordCity (Manchester) and MediaCityUK (Salford) are the first in the UK to demonstrate net zero carbon status based on their operational carbon emissions, action taken to reduce those emissions and their renewable energy use.


Supporting and technical data

Vital Energy

Salford Quays, United Kingdom





Engine Type:
1 x TCG 2020 V20

Primary Fuel:
Natural Gas

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