Edinburgh’s St James Quarter development utilises ABG blueroof storm water drainage system

St James Quarter is an impressive new galleria retail shopping centre and residential development that rejuvenates a large area of Edinburgh city centre’s New Town. The former 1960s era shopping precinct has now been demolished to make way for the new £1bn development.
St James Quarter aerial view

Large city centre developments  are subject to strict planning conditions for the management of surface water. The Water Environment Regulations3 (CAR regulations, Scotland) require a Sustainable Drainage System (SuDS) to attenuate and treat all surface water from new developments prior to discharging to the water network.

The ABG blueroof system treats and restricts storm water that deluges onto the roof and gradually releases it over a number of hours via outlet control and filtration chambers to the underground drainage system.
blueroof system

On account of the site’s basement parking, underground storm-water storage tanks weren’t an option and so the roof-level attenuation system alternative was specified. This brought the additional benefit of reduced spoil disposal costs and avoids the large carbon footprint and associated safety risks involved in the excavation operation and additional construction vehicle movements it involves. The proposals for drainage and SuDS were primarily allocated to the 15,000m2 catchment area on level 5.
SuDS Diffuser chamber

Altogether, over 8,000m2 of SuDS storm water attenuation was installed. Including 80mm deep attenuation void formers and bespoke diffuser chambers fitted to control downpipe flow rates. In addition ABG’s Roofdrain geocomposite was installed throughout at the base of all rooftop planters to provide a connected drainage and irrigation / reservoir layer as part of the landscape design.

To find out more about the project, read the case study here.