A LOW carbon heat network in Bradford city centre has been described as a “win-win” situation.

And a Bradford architect says it could act as an example of how the area can successfully shift its economy.

The network, details of which were announced last week, will use air source heat pumps located at a new city centre power plant to create heat that would then be piped to buildings across the city centre.

The group set up to deliver the heat network, Bradford Energy Limited, says the work will be entirely funded by the private sector, and cost around £40m.

The company is a subsidiary of 1Energy, which has set up heat networks in other cities.

Once complete, the network is expected to vastly reduce the amount of carbon generated by city centre buildings.

During a recent meeting of West Yorkshire Combined Authority the network was raised during a discussion on how to make the region’s buildings more energy ef-ficient.

Members of the Place, Regeneration and Housing Committee discussed what was being done to reduce energy bills in local homes and businesses.

They heard how Combined Authority funded retrofit schemes were helping some homes, including numerous Victorian terraces in the Manningham area, but that the costs of such schemes were high.

Asked if the work by the Combined Authority was enough, Melanie Corcoran – director of delivery, said: “This is just an interim measure – currently this is not sustainable.”

Amir Hussain, from Bradford based Yeme Architects, was sitting as chair of the Committee. He suggested that the private sector could play a bigger role in future.

He said: “I do think there is a Green economy opportunity here. There is an opportunity to reposition the economy around sustainability.

“In Bradford we have a District heat network proposition that has come forward.

“It is really interesting as it being funded entirely by the private sector. What that means is it is a real win-win, as people will generate sustainable heat for cheaper then they will be able to generate themselves, and it will take a huge amount of carbon out as these buildings will be able to get rid of their own gas boilers.

“There is no capital cost from a Council perspective.”

He said that while groups like the Combined Authority could lobby for more funding to switch to green energy in the future, the heat network plan showed the private sector could play a vital role.