Meadowbank Sports Centre


Meadowbank Sports Centre is a new £47m state-of-the-art facility in Edinburgh which is set to replace the existing stadium as part of the area’s major redevelopment.

Along with an outdoor athletics track, spectator stand and 3G pitches, the 15,000m2 building will include the following:

  • Three fitness studios
  • 60m six-lane indoor athletics track
  • Two multi-sport games halls
  • Gymnasium
  • Gymnastics hall
  • Boxing gym with ring
  • Martial arts combat studio
  • Two squash courts
  • Hospitality suite
  • Office and meeting space
  • Café


Carbon Futures were commissioned to review and optimise the energy strategy originally developed by an M&E consultant.

The original energy strategy predicted that 88% of the building’s energy consumption was associated with domestic hot water, which for a modern state-of-the-art sports centre, appeared to be abnormally high. This inaccuracy resulted in a significant overestimation of the building’s thermal energy demand, which led to an over-specified design incurring unnecessary capital, operational and maintenance costs.

Part of our commission was to produce a dynamic simulation model to accurately assess the building’s energy performance, with the overall aim of producing an optimised and improved energy strategy.

In addition to providing design optimisation, we were also appointed to review alternative low and zero carbon generating technologies.

Design Optimisation

On reviewing the original energy strategy, we identified various areas of non-compliance with Building Standards, which would have required a substantial redesign to rectify the issues, whilst also resulting in a protracted warrant approval process.

The optimised design resolved the following areas of non-compliance:

  • The initial SBEM calculation was wrongly assessed under the 2010 Building Standards, instead of the current regulations
  • The incorrect weather file was used. In Scotland, all SBEM calculations must be produced using the Glasgow weather file, regardless of the building’s location
  • A boiler efficiency of 98% was used instead of the manufacturer’s published figure of 95.6%
  • The efficacy of various luminaires were below the minimum permissible values set by Building Standards

By accurately modelling the building, rectifying areas of non-compliance and optimising the energy strategy, we were able to demonstrate that the sports centre could perform significantly better than the initial energy strategy.

The results of our revised energy design demonstrate the benefit of having a dedicated independent energy and sustainability consultancy involved from the outset. By giving the energy modelling process the attention it deserves, we were able to offer our client significant savings, both in terms of initial capital spend and in-use energy costs.

Another benefit of the optimisation exercise was the improvement of the predicted EPC rating from an E to a B rating.

Design Team

Holmes Miller
Holmes Miller
City of Edinburgh Council
Local Authority
City of Edinburgh Council