Canary Wharf: resilience at a global financial hub
We operate and maintain the electricity network for Canary Wharf’s multi-tenanted commercial and retail buildings: ensuring an uninterrupted, secure supply. Our portfolio includes eight commercial offices and five retail malls, including national or global headquarters for some of the world’s largest financial institutions.
Canary Wharf is one of the world’s premier financial and commercial building complexes. Around 120,000 people travel to the site every day to work and play within its commercial and retail towers, which host more than 150 major office tenants.
The estate is also home to a growing range of start-ups, entrepreneurs, tech firms, public and private, retail, and residential spaces. The complex comprises five separate malls including the award-winning Crossrail Place, one of London’s biggest roof gardens, and over 300 shops, bars, restaurants, services, and amenities. Across the entire Canary Wharf estate there are 16.5 million sq. ft. of completed offices and retail spaces, with a further 11.9 million sq. ft. of office, residential, retail, and social buildings under construction or design.
It's critical to Canary Wharf that our operations are programmed, safe, resilient, secure and efficient. The financial hub is the heartbeat of the UK economy and plays a crucial role in global financial markets. Many global businesses use their Canary Wharf office as a central hub between their USA and Asia offices which require essential supplies to be available 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year, so planning shutdowns for routine maintenance can be a significant challenge. Even an interruption of a few minutes could have a significant knock-on effect and obstruct operations. Our role in this is fundamental to making sure that never happens.
Maintaining and operating industrial-scale electrical infrastructure with complex high voltage and low voltage substations is a significant challenge in a site visited more than a hundred thousand each day. Our role is to make sure the electricity network remains resilient and maintained to the highest standards with limited or no interruption to the business we serve. We maintain regular contact and work closely with Canary Wharf and the businesses which operate there to maintain, upgrade, repair and manage the electrical infrastructure in a seamless way so our client can focus on what they do best.
Approach and innovation
We are responsible for the continued operation, maintenance, repair and renewal of Canary Wharf’s electrical distribution systems. We provide this service for the Canary Wharf-owned electrical infrastructure at both high and low voltage levels. Our team is strategically co-located on site to continuously monitor and maintain infrastructure. In the event of an emergency, we run a 24/7 standby rota of fully trained operational employees.
We are also in the process of collaborating with Canary Warf’s management company and individual building managers to work toward a series of Network Asset Management Plans (NAMP). These will allow us to help the site meet its sustainability goals, manage cost effectiveness, and complete planned maintenance and renewals in the most efficient way possible. This means timing our upgrades to non-work hours to maximise efficiency and implementing thermographic imaging – a non-intrusive way of monitoring assets to plan and schedule our work. Thermographic imaging allows us to scan for assets which have slight temperature differences and may need to be replaced, without having to manually inspect them.
Delivery and collaboration
We continue to work closely with Canary Wharf estate to operate and maintain the high voltage, low voltage, and associated cabling across the sites we manage.
We have also worked with the estate to help Canary Wharf target its Net Zero Carbon Pathway by 2030. Through our ongoing work to develop Network Asset Management Plans (NAMP) models, we can help identify ageing electrical assets which should be replaced early with new models. This not only lowers emissions but reduces costs and minimises the need for future maintenance.
Safety is also a key part of our role. We meet regularly with Canary Wharf to discuss safety, share our data, provide training, and share best practice through our internal safety campaigns. Our safety standards are exemplary on the estate, where we also regularly train and upskill our own highly skilled and motivated employees.