Uni launches energy project contest

University of Chester is seeking an energy development partner to create an independent and green source of power at Thornton Science Park in Ince, Ellesmere Port removing reliance on the oil refinery next door.

The budget for the energy project is between £4m and £15m. The university intends to use savings on energy costs to pay back the development cost over the next 30 years.

The university acquired the 66-acre site from Shell in March 2013 for a nominal sum. The campus is being converted into research and enterprise space.

Thornton Science Park is currently dependent on the adjacent refinery site for a number of its utilities and the project is aimed at securing security of supply and independence from its neighbour.

The chosen energy company would be responsible for the design and construction of infrastructure and installation of energy conservation measures which will be supported by energy performance guarantees. Some or all of these works will be funded by the energy savings and the partner organisation may be required to retain responsibility for operation and maintenance including extensive monitoring and verification.

The deadline for expressions of interest is 22 February. Gleeds advises the university.

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