Limeburner Lane Substation Modernisation, London

Architecture and engineering for redesign of a gas insulated switchgear substation

The redesign of Limeburner Lane substation in London, UK, was a complex and challenging project. The design was intended to facilitate construction while maintaining a live switchroom in the basement.

Arup’s services on the project included T&D, geotechnics, structural engineeringmechanical and electrical engineering, public healthfire and acoustic engineering.

Design challenges

The brief was based on three 132/11/11kV oil filled water cooled transformer installations within the planning approved building height. The design was to facilitate the construction whilst maintaining the live 11kV switchroom within the substation basement.

The brief was based on three 132/11/11kV oil filled water cooled transformer installations within the planning approved building height. The design was to facilitate the construction whilst maintaining the live 11kV switchroom within the substation basement.

The design of the Limeburner Lane substation was a complex and challenging project as Arup had to work within a number of constraints, most notably;

  • To reuse the pile foundation of the decommissioned substation (only the 132kV and 11kV switchgear is still live) for the new building and arrange the equipment layout such that they do not overstress the load bearing capacity of the existing plies.

  • To work within the planning approved building height.

  • To undertake the design to allow the construction of new substation (beyond the ground floor level) whist maintaining the services at two level basement and recommend appropriate staged change over.

  • To maintain tunnel ventilation system and reroute the new ductwork to suit the new building layouts.

Arup was instrumental in ensuring that design work within the above constraints and billability were adhered to whilst, remodelling the gas insulated switchgear to suit the planning approved building height and also to install the 132kV cable within a tight space.

High Voltage Engineering

The HV design included, redefining the 132kV GIS requirements and arrangement, designing of spatial requirement for 11kV switchgear, 66MVA transformers and other auxiliary systems, 132kV cable installation and support system based upon the UKPN standards and working closely with EDF Energy approved frame work Contractors.


3D modelling for collaboration

Arup used a collaborative approach to deliver services. Using 3D software tools, the client was presented with an accurate visualisation of the completed project prior to construction. The 3D models were also used by contractors.

Regular workshops were held with the client team and preferred suppliers to ensure that technical requirements were incorporated into the design.