Deep Sewer Survey | Middlewood Locks, Greater Manchester

Client: Buro Happold and BCEGI Construction

Project:  £700m Waterside Residential and Office Development

Completion: August 2016


Met Consultancy Group performed a deep sewer survey at Middlewood Locks as part of the £1bn scheme to deliver a new mixed-use neighbourhood.

Project Overview

Middlewood Locks proposes a unique and substantial new waterside development on a prominent gateway site in Salford, Greater Manchester. One of the largest regeneration developments in the North West, the £1bn scheme will deliver a new mixed-use neighbourhood comprising 2,215 new homes and 900,000 sq ft of commercial space including offices, hotel, shops, restaurants, convenience store and gym on a 24.5-acre brownfield site centred on three large basins of the Manchester Bolton and Bury Canal.

The site is strategically located next to the commercial heart of Manchester and Salford’s city centres, and next to Salford Central station which, together with the surrounding area, is currently undergoing a multi-million pound transformation.

Technical Overview

Met Consultancy Group was asked to perform a condition survey and trace the route of a deep trunk sewer across the site, which is centred on three large basins of the Manchester Bolton and Bury Canal in Salford. Met coordinated the surveys and worked together with a specialist CCTV crew to undertake the work.

Previous attempts by other companies to trace the sewer had failed, raising the prospect of potential delays to the development as this could not progress without certain knowledge of its location and route. Tracing the sewer proved extremely challenging due to its depth, and when its position was located by Met, a reasonably high flow rate required the confined spaces team to deploy a CCTV system mounted on a floating rig to conduct the condition survey.

The sewer was then found to be obstructed half-way along which required lines floating down the sewer to pull the floating rig back against the flow from a downstream manhole in order to complete the survey.

Met managed the whole project, successfully completing the survey objectives and establishing the position and condition of the sewer. The project required permits obtaining from United Utilities, inductions and access onto Network Rail controlled land (which was being managed by a different contractor), and extensive traffic management  – all of which required re-arranging for an additional visit once the sewer was found to be obstructed.