West Midlands Travel Ltd, part of the National Express Group, is the biggest bus operator in the West Midlands and one of the largest in the UK, running over 1700 buses from 9 depots in and around Birmingham, Coventry, and the West Midlands. Working collaboratively with Birmingham City Council to support the legacy vision for the 2022 Commonwealth Games, the need to relocate the existing Perry Barr bus depot was identified.
National Express transition to a zero-emission fleet
The existing Perry Barr bus depot was over 50 years old and situated in an area of land within the Commonwealth games legacy plan. To create a new depot to support a modern operation and the transition to zero-emission vehicles required a completely new approach, and LCMB were appointed to assist National Express to define their requirements, develop the new depot and manage the construction project & fit out works. It was critical to recognise the diversity of the teams and develop a world-class facility to enable the transformation of working practices and drive efficiencies.
- Define the requirements and scope of works for the new depot.
- Over-see the design development based on National Express requirements.
- Procure and negotiate the final construction contract.
- Act as employer’s agent throughout the design and project delivery process.
- Assist National Express with their transition to the new depot.
LCMB worked collaboratively with the National Express stakeholder teams to develop a scheme to meet their key requirements and objectives. One of the key deliverables was to future-proof the depot as far as possible, enabling the transition to a zero-emission fleet whilst ensuring all the current operations and vehicles are fully supported.
Sustainable features were integral to the design ethos of the new depot. With environmental improvement at the heart of the business, an early decision was made to deliver additional sustainability measures. A wilderness meadow area, green roof, solar panels, rainwater harvesting and water recycling for the bus wash system were included, and the site has no gas supply, with all heating and cooling delivered via an air-source heat pump installation.
Environmental benefits were also key to the construction methodology, where a carefully planned construction programme ensured there were no materials moved off-site, avoiding more than 50 000 heavy goods vehicle movements.
Challenges and Achievements
- Design development with multiple stakeholders and operational teams.
- Planning process and robust environmental and heritage requirements.
- Construction and materials supply during Covid-19 lockdowns.
- Project completed within cost and programme parameters and to demanding quality standards.
- Excellent site and programme management ensuring risks and issues were managed without material impact.
- Transformation of working practices and creating high-quality inclusive facilities that respected the heritage of the company.
- Significant environmental savings through careful material choice and programme design.
- Passive infrastructure embedded in the facility to support transition to EV fleet.
“I had the pleasure of working with LCMB during the development of our Perry Barr Bus Depot. The depot was carefully designed to be future-proof for our transition to an all-electric vehicle (EV) fleet. The team at LCMB led the construction project from design to handover and were dedicated, professional and exceeded our expectations. Communication was clear throughout and the project was completed on target.
We look forward to future collaborations and highly recommend LCMB as a reliable partner for any businesses seeking help and expertise in the built environment”
Adam Cook UK Property Director
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LCMB improves the financial and environmental sustainability of buildings and estates, and the productivity and well-being of the people using them. We do this by reducing building operating costs, energy used and improving building space and its’ utilisation. We offer Workplace Performance, Facilities Management, Project Management and Resource optimisation support.
Amongst others our clients include King’s College London, Birmingham Airport, Tata Technologies, University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Bouygues Energies & Services.