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Blairtummock Housing, Glasgow



The refurbishment of nine blocks of 3-storey housing. The refurbishment work included height reductions and remodelling which reduced the number of units to 40. The construction comprises external walls of brick-cavity-brick construction with timber floors and pitched roofs. Heating was by gas and electric fires. The refurbishment was the first development carried out by the Association and took place in 1991 with a tender cost of £1,230,000; equivalent to £30,750 per unit. The design as by John Le Harivel Architects and, helped by an analysis undertaken by the Energy Design Advisory Scheme, was to a high standard of energy efficiency. 


The range of estimated payback periods*, taking into account the different flat types present, for the main energy efficiency measures are:

  • insulation of loft spaces, 2 years
  • installation of overcladding, 55 to 80 years
  • close wall insulation, 20 to 30 years
  • double glazing, 45 to 60 years
  • installation of gas-fired central heating with condensing combination boilers, 5 to 10 years
  • whole package, 15 to 20 years


 *The payback periods were estimated using the cost of both the measure and the associated work necessary to incorporate the measure in the project. The associated work varied from project to project. Therefore payback periods can only be taken as specific to each project.


Energy efficiency measures:

The measures included in the final specification were:

  • glass fibre loft insulation
  • external overcladding system which included 60mm insulation
  • insulation to close walls
  • timber frame double glazing
  • extract fans to kitchens and bathrooms
  • full gas-fired central heating with condensing combination boilers. 


Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) ratings and cost-effectiveness

A SAP analysis was carried out for the flats before and after refurbishment. The analysis showed that excellent SAP ratings were achieved; higher than could be typically expected for a refurbished property. The annual space and water heating costs were estimated to have been reduced by 83% for the top floor flats and 80% for the first floor flats, with corresponding reductions in CO2 emissions estimated at 59% and 45% respectively. 

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