Project

Thurston Primary Academy

Brief

Thurston Primary Academy required a larger site to cater for the new housing developments in the local area.

The existing site was unsuitable for expansion and a decision was therefore made to relocate and expand to facilitate the additional pupils (Early Years and Secondary). The school will initially accommodate 420 students, plus a 30-place pre-school, with room for future expansion to a total of 630 students in the main school building and 60 places in the pre-school.  

Key Info

Location:
Thurston, Suffolk

Type:
New Build

Contract Type:
Traditional

Client:
Suffolk County Council Children
and Young People (CYP)

End User:
Thurston Primary Academy

Project Value:
£7.6 million

Contractor:
Barnes Construction

Disciplines:
Architecture, Building Services Design, Estates + Development Management, Interior Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Project Management, Quantity Surveying + Cost Consultancy, Structural + Civil Engineering

Imagery

01
02
03
04
05
/
01
02
03
04
05

Scope

Our multi-disciplined team were asked to project manage and cost manage both buildings.

Two school sites were offered as potential new locations for the school. Feasibility studies were carried out at both sites to determine their suitability. We then produced a detailed report which was presented to the school, Trust and Diocese. Following this presentation, we were commissioned to design and implement the necessary school development.

We worked collaboratively to ensure design procurement met the client’s needs and redesigned the internal layout to utilise the available space fully. Natural ventilation was incorporated into the design where possible to save costs and reduce the school’s impact on the environment (linking to Suffolk County Council’s green credentials). To ensure the client’s budget was met, we simplified the roof structure and reduced the total height of the building. This allowed our Structural Engineers to create a steel frame which satisfied the required checks as well as reducing the steel tonnage, and therefore cost. Further savings were identified within the bills of quantities.

The design was modelled in 3D to allow for a successful coordination of all design elements. Solibri Model Checker was used to run automated collision detection on each discipline’s model at fixed points in time. The findings were then discussed in design team meetings and any issues were addressed to ensure clashes were eliminated. Reports were generated as part of this process to provide visual confirmation to all of the parties involved. Designing a model to BIM Level 2, which was used by our QS team and contractor, provided the client with a more defined cost certainty.

Our Landscape team worked with the client and stakeholder to develop the site masterplan to reflect the school’s ethos. This included a Forest School area, amphitheatre and mounds for a variety of play options and habitats. Following negotiation with Suffolk County Council Planners, cycle provision has been incorporated into the design and space allocated for future expansion.

Consultation evenings with parents and meetings with the Governors, Planning and Parish Council were organised by us to help the project run smoothly. Letter drops were also arranged to keep the local community informed throughout the project.

Testimonial

“It has been extremely exciting to work closely with the infrastructure team, Suffolk County Council and Concertus Design and Property Consultants, who have been fantastic at guiding us step by step in order to reach this point on the Thurston C of E Primary Academy relocation and expansion.”

Kathy Lambert and John Bayes, Co-Head Teachers, Thurston CEVC Primary Academy

 

“We are thrilled to once again be working with Suffolk County Council and Concertus on another new school to meet the needs of the local communities in mid-Suffolk.”

Mark Bailey, Director, Barnes Construction

Result

The school was completed in summer 2021 providing a modern, innovative and exciting new school for the community.

Processes developed and implemented on this project for client engagement and BIM/clash detection are now being used on many other projects due to their success in saving time, money and providing truly integrated outputs.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More

Project

The Bridge School

Phase Two

Brief

The Bridge School aims to provide the students with high class, specialist education facilities and a smooth transition between primary and secondary education.

In Suffolk there was a requirement for further and enhanced Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) schools. In 2014 Concertus designed and delivered The Bridge Primary school, a purpose built Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) school. At the time of this delivery, we were also commissioned to produce a masterplan for phase two of this project, to extend the primary school to provide a secondary school connected via shared facilities. In 2019 the client, Suffolk County Council, authorised this second phase to proceed, and Concertus were commissioned to deliver the project alongside the chosen contractor, Morgan Sindall.

Key Info

Type:
New Build

Value:
£9.2 million

Location:
Ipswich, Suffolk

Client:
Suffolk County Council

Contractor:
Morgan Sindall

End User:
The Bridge School

Project Completion:
March 2021

Disciplines:
Architecture, Building Services Design, Interior Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Project Management, Quantity Surveying + Cost Consultancy, Structural + Civil Engineering

Imagery

01
02
03
04
05
/
01
02
03
04
05

Scope

The project manager oversaw the project from inception to completion.

In 2019, when the Council decided to progress the development of the secondary school, the original plans had to be reassessed in line with new budgetary requirements. This resulted in a complete redesign so that the project would meet the client’s new budget while still adhering to their key requirements and the existing planning permissions. This was done carefully, involving collaboration between many of Concertus’ in-house teams, the Contractor, the end-users, the Planning Authority and the client. This ensured the re-design followed the original ethos of the project while still adhering to the agreed key programme dates.

Further design considerations were taken in relation to the varying levels on site. Our Structural and Civil Engineers explored various options to provide a suitable solution for the water discharge on site, as well as working closely with the architecture team to ensure the design was sympathetic to the space available for the new school. Value engineering options, including cut and fill comparisons, resulted in the ability to level the floor plan, removing staircases from the design improving both the cost efficiency of the design and the ease of movement around the school for the students.

The Structural Engineering team took full consideration of the site requirements when opting to use a timber Structurally Insulated Panel System (SIPS) for the school’s structure. This Modern Method of Construction (MMC) was chosen due to the proximity of the new building to the existing school and the restricted access to the site. As SIPS are predominantly manufactured off-site, the construction time on-site was significantly shorter minimising noise and disruption on the occupied school site.

The project manager oversaw the project from inception to completion. An excellent working relationship was developed between Concertus, Morgan Sindall and the client which remained throughout the project. This ensured the project was co-ordinated successfully and progressed well in line with the agreed programme. Co-ordination of the site was vital due to the works being carried out on a live school site. Clear and consistent communication between all involved ensured the impact of works upon the school were minimised and full consideration was taken for the acoustic and sensory needs of the pupils. Logistical meetings were held with the end users prior to the building works starting to ensure access routes were agreed for each stage of the project to keep the school safe and fully operational throughout the works. This co-ordination and working relationship were instrumental, particularly during the covid-19 pandemic which started part way through construction. The team’s efficient and proactive response to the pandemic ensured the site did not have to close, and that all operations were carried out safely fully complying with government guidance. Strict social distancing measures meant the school and construction site could operate independently without any contact between site workers or pupils and staff, diminishing the risk of covid-19 outbreaks and site closure.

Our project manager led engagement sessions with end users early in the project to ensure all the needs and requirements for the future of the school were taken into consideration. Vital elements were that the design and structure were of high quality, incorporated different signing and colours for each classroom, safety considerations for access control and safeguarding, a hydrotherapy pool with changing rooms, a sensory room, and a safe and easy drop off area. Our architecture team led the design workshops and sessions to incorporate these elements whilst still maintaining a modern and functional design, as well as implementing innovative elements such as specially designed acoustics panels to ensure a quieter environment for the pupils. Client engagement continued throughout the project, and the schools headteacher played an active role. This was essential to ensuring the best possible facilities could be provided for the pupils, which were facilitated through active design changes as the project progressed. For instance, the hall layout was changed to account for rebound therapy needs upon request of the headteacher who knew this would be a highly beneficial addition for the pupils. We worked closely with the therapist and headteacher to incorporate this requirement.

Further redesigns, which were administered while construction was taking place on site, included substantial changes to the external works. This was to accommodate a change in teaching provision, ensuring the external areas of the school were suitable for the school’s amended needs while still remaining within the client’s budget. This involved a series of discussions and workshops alongside the Quantity Surveying team and Landscape Architect. We also worked closely with the school to ensure the play equipment they had purchased at the start of the project was considered within the design, allowing adequate space for this to be installed post completion.

Following the impact of the covid-19 pandemic and the social distancing requirements put in place, the school requested changes to the drop off/pick up areas. This was due to changes in the pupil transport arrangements and logistics upon how many pupils could be dropped off at any one time, which meant the current design no longer met the school’s needs. We worked with the school and Morgan Sindall to review the alternative options available to provide a more suitable solution for the increased traffic. This involved separating drop-off zones for different ages of pupil and amending access arrangements within the school to facilitate the two-entrance system. This was aimed at ensuring social distancing could still be adhered to while allowing pupils to have safe and close access to where they needed to go and to allow for more efficient pick-up and drop-off times.

Testimonial

“I attended the opening ceremony for The Bridge and was absolutely stunned by the new school. The building is marvellous and the landscaping quite exceptional. Given the constraints of the site, it was an enormous ask to work around an existing school to achieve something quite new for Suffolk.  We give our sincere thanks to the Concertus team for their outstanding work and to Morgan Sindall for the quality and timeliness of the build in the context of seemingly impossible external conditions. I hope everyone feels very proud of their work. It is going to be a wonderful school.”

Joy Stoddart, Head of Schools Infrastructure, Suffolk County Council

Result

The new secondary school provides staff and pupils with high-tech and modern facilities to support their learning and development.

The transformation of this site, into a state-of-the-art SEND school, has been a much-needed project for Suffolk County Council and the local community in Ipswich. The excellent working relationship between Suffolk County Council, Concertus, Morgan Sindall, and the Academy end user allowed for a seamless transition to deliver this specialist school, which has surpassed expectations through creative design solutions and co-operative working practices. The excellent management of this project and collaboration between all involved resulted in the new school being completed on-time and in budget, despite the impact of the covid-19 pandemic. The Headteacher is thrilled with the completed school and the creation of a space which provides excellent educational benefits for current and future pupils and has described it as a beacon of excellence.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More

Project

Hulland CEVCP
(Window Replacement)

Brief

The existing roof light within Hulland Church of England Primary School’s Hall had been leaking for some time and required a full replacement.

Concertus were commissioned by the client to carry out and project manage the necessary works to design and replace the existing roof light consisting of 12 equal bays of single glazed roof windows. Due to the nature of the project and the fact scaffolding was required, one of the key requirements from the school was that the work be completed within the summer holiday period.

Key Info

Type:
Maintenance

Value:
£30k

Location:
Ashbourne, Derbyshire

Contractor:
Jennings Roofing Ltd.

Client:
Derbyshire County Council

End User:
Hulland Church of England Primary School

Duration:
2 weeks

Disciplines:
Building Surveying

Scope

Concertus were involved in this project from inception through to completion.

Our responsibilities included procuring a contractor for the project, which initially there were issues with. The team were keen to resolve this to ensure the project could be completed within the school’s timeframe. By working collaboratively with the client, Derbyshire County Council (DCC), we were able to successfully appoint a contractor, Jennings Roofing Ltd., to ensure the project could be completed before the start of the school term.

To design and specify the replacement the team worked closely with the client to understand their requirements and ensure the new roof light could work more effectively for them. A thermally enhanced self-supporting Monopitch roof light system was utilised, which consisted of 9 equal bays glazed with 25mm Lumira structural polycarbonate sheet. These materials will not only enhance the thermal efficiency of the roof light but will also provide a high-quality finish for the client. The new roof light has also been installed with an electric window opening mechanism, along with the supply and installation of all necessary wiring, switches, sensors, and a control panel. This improves upon the previous operating of the windows via a winding gear system. This upgrade provides the school with a more practical and efficient arrangement to provide natural ventilation to the hall.

A timber drainage gutter system was also constructed, which was designed to facilitate continuous water run-off from the centre of the roof light to the outer edges. The benefit of this design is that it will provide an improved water drainage system for the school that will divert water away from the window; preventing it from becoming saturated and causing similar leaking issues. The team also undertook the supply, installation, and decoration of MDF board internally to provide an excellent internal finish for the client after the works had been carried out.

Imagery

Result

The new window will ensure the school does not experience any more leaks whilst also improving the thermal efficiency.

The new roof light was very well received by the client who are pleased by the quality and appearance of the replacement as well as the more efficient electric control system which was provided. The new electric opening system also enhances the ease of ventilation for the school. The collaborative approach between Concertus and Jennings Roofing Ltd. ensured the project was completed on time and that excellent service was provided for the client throughout.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More

Project

Castle East School

Brief

The aim of this project was to contribute towards meeting the undersupply of SEND school provision in Suffolk.

This project was procured by Concertus under the Suffolk County Council Framework, for the refurbishment and remodelling of the existing 1930’s building. This was to create The Castle East School, an 80 place Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Cognition and Learning (C&L) provision for both primary and secondary school children.

Key Info

Type:
Refurbishment + Remodelling

Contract Type:
JCT Standard Contract

 

Location:
Bungay, Suffolk

Duration:
10 months

Client:
Suffolk County Council

Contractor:
SEH French

End User:
Castle East School

Disciplines:
Architecture, Building Services Design, Estates + Development Management, Project Management, Quantity Surveying + Cost Consultancy, Structural + Civil Engineering

Imagery

01
02
03
04
05
/
01
02
03
04
05

Scope

The re-configuration has been designed to deliver 8 class bases, 4 for the primary students and 4 for the secondary students.

We have been involved in the project from inception, including the initial feasibility studies and procurement of the contractor through a single stage tender. We worked closely with the client to develop a two stage approach to the project, which would adhere to their budget and brief. Phase one was the refurbishment of the unused area of the school and the appropriate external areas to provide a C&L unit with an initial 40 place capacity. Phase two will then be the future expansion of the school, to 80 places, to utilise the remaining premises and the associated external areas currently occupied by The Attic PRU.

The school will incorporate various specialist facilities, including a food technology classroom, a design and technology classroom, science classrooms, a dining hall, a sensory suite, an ICT suite, a library, and a music and drama hall. The team worked hard to ensure the design was developed with the specialist needs of the end users in mind to provide an appropriate state of the art learning facility.  When planning the works, the team wanted to ensure the design worked with the existing 1930’s building. This was beneficial as the integrity provided by the existing building enhances the robustness of the school to best suit the end users. We have also provided an upgraded boiler system and upgraded the windows from Crittall Frame to UPVC double glazing to increase the efficiency of the building.

Result

The work carried out by the team on phase one of the project has been very well received by the client.

The project team have provided an exceptional service throughout and have adapted well to the client’s needs. The completed school provides a significant improvement to the pre-existing building to provide the much needed SEND C&L provision in Bungay.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More

Project

Mildenhall Hub

Brief

We were appointed to produce a master plan for creating a single site hub for the town’s public services.

Spread across the town in Mildenhall, many of the diverse public sector buildings were reaching the end of their design lives. The hub would be home to the relocated Mildenhall Academy, Leisure Centre, Children’s Centre, Pre-school, Public Library, Advice Centre and offices for councils, the NHS, central government and the voluntary sector. Providing the town and surrounding area with integrated access to community services.

Key Info

Location:
Mildenhall, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

Project Type:
New Build

Client:
West Suffolk Council

End User:
Abbeycroft Leisure, Academies Enterprise Trust, Academy Transformation Trust, Adult Social Services, Citizens Advice, Clinical Commissions Group, Department Working Pensions, Public Heath England, Suffolk County Council (SCC), Suffolk Libraries, Suffolk Police, West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Trust

Project Completion:
May 2021

Project Value:
£39 million

Contract Type:
Design and Build

Disciplines:
Architecture, Interior Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Mechanical + Electrical Engineering, Quantity Surveying + Cost Consultancy, Structural + Civil Engineering

Imagery

01
02
03
04
05
06
07
08
09
010
011
012
013
014
015
016
017
018
019
/
01
02
03
04
05
06
07
08
09
010
011
012
013
014
015
016
017
018
019

Scope

This project required a multi-disciplinary approach across our in house professional teams.

Originating with the master planning, the project required involvement from our Architecture, Landscaping, Interior Architecture, Quantity Surveying, Structural + Civil Engineering, and Building Services Teams.

In order to first explore the possibility of creating the hub, we developed a robust business case to allow partners and stakeholders to conduct due diligence on the proposed community facility. We engaged and consulted with a large number of stakeholders, consolidating all their ideas and requirements. We also carried out land surveys and architectural design proposals. Each option was fully costed to include the build, capital receipts and any land purchase. We produced all background and supporting information, and gave a 25 year lifecycle cost.

We produced detailed designs for the build, including massing and site analysis drawings, layout plans and plans for the use of the buildings and surrounding spaces. This resulted in a smooth process for gaining approvals throughout planning and building control stages. Our designs were also used to secure funding to progress the project. The facilities included within the design are a high school, leisure centre, job centre, medical centre, police, local authority, library, café, pre-school, children’s centre and office spaces.

Our team of architects took many factors into consideration when designing the community facility. For instance, there were multiple stakeholders and end users involved on this project, which presents a more complex task of ensuring all their needs are met. However, through frequent client engagement sessions, the team were able to develop and understand their briefs, gaining a thorough understanding of how best to suit their needs.

This was essential to ensuring a cohesive layout was maintained throughout the building, connecting the facilities logically and allowing staff and users to navigate easily. The design has also provided optimal space for future advances in service delivery and population needs, as well as ensuring the building worked well within its environment. This involved designing in accordance with scale, mass, flow and architectural rhythm.

Our landscape architects ensured the external design was consistent with the ethos of the hub and internal design, as well as providing a cohesive site which connects to the existing town and public routes. They have provided green corridors and landscape features across the site to replace any landscape and ecology lost to the development, whilst enhancing the existing landscape. In order to manage surface water in a sustainable manner, a site wide Sustainable Drainage System (SuDS) was incorporated. They also ensured the site included provision of vehicular access and parking, while promoting sustainable methods of transport through cycle routes, electric car charging points and public transport connections.

Alongside the design of the building, we were appointed under a separate project to undertake a Category B fit-out to the library, café, Council Chamber and office areas. This included specification and installation of the furniture and fixtures as well as selection of final finishes, wayfinding signage and branding. The branding was an additional requirement, created by our graphic designer alongside the interior team, which the client were delighted with.

Mildenhall Hub reflects the Client’s aspiration for a multi-user facility with sustainability and efficient operation at the forefront of the design, focusing on reducing carbon emissions. The design has followed the strategy of ‘Be Lean’, ‘Be Clean’, and ‘Be Green’ principles to significantly reduce carbon emissions when compared to the target emissions rate. A combination of renewable technologies such as PhotoVoltaic (PV) panels, Ground Source Heat Pumps (GSHP), Combined Heat and Powe (CHP) and battery storage have been integrated into the design. Surplus electricity produced from the CHP and PV panels is fed into the battery storage system and used by the building when required. The purpose-built battery is formed from 24 recycled electric vehicle batteries and is the size of a shipping container. Having a centralised plant room serving all the facilities under one roof allows for the integration of services, resulting in an economical and energy efficient solution.

The Hub’s main construction was well underway when the Covid-19 pandemic began. The library and café had been designed as “The Core” of the building joining into other key facilities such as the academy, police offices, council offices, and NHS treatment and consultation rooms. Our design team met with the client, stakeholders and main contractor to plan and develop new design options for the project in-line with covid guidance. Our proactive approach ensured we could facilitate the late design changes, and maintain best value for the client. We adopted a phased approach in line with the government’s lifting of restrictions, which ensured the facilities with delayed opening dates were postponed in favour of focusing on completing the facilities which were required first.  Our experience and efficient response meant very few changes were required. This meant the client’s expectations could still be met, and the impact to ongoing construction was minimised ensuring adherence to the programme and delivery dates.

Testimonial

“The Mildenhall Hub is the model for how many towns and cities will provide their school, leisure and other public services in the future and I feel it is something that we will look back at in years to come and feel proud of.”

James Waters, Councilor and Leader of Forest Heath District Council

Result

The client and end users are extremely pleased with the finished project, which is an example of what can be achieved by working collaboratively with multiple stakeholders.

 

The completed hub is a national exemplar, and the first of its kind in the UK to have as many community services brought together under one roof to achieve its aim in reducing overheads and creating better cost and environmental efficiencies. The design of this building, both internally and externally, meets the client’s brief and requirements, as well as providing a practical and aesthetically pleasing community hub.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More

Project

Lakelands Primary School

Brief

As part of the master plan for a major housing development in the Stanway area a site was provided for a new primary school in response to the expected increase in demand for primary school places in the area.

We worked closely with our client, Barnes Construction who has been commissioned by Essex County Council, to provide a 2-storey, 2 form entry school with suitable facilities to accommodate 420 pupils.

Key Info

Location:
Colchester, Essex

Project Type:
New Build

Contract Type:
Design and Build

Client:
Barnes Construction

End User:
Lakelands Primary School

Contractor:
Barnes Construction

Project Value:
£6 million

Project Start:
November 2019

Project Completion:
November 2019

Project Duration:
1 year

Disciplines:
Architecture, Interior Architecture, Landscape Architecture , Mechanical + Electrical Engineering, Structural + Civil Engineering

Imagery

01
02
03
04
/
01
02
03
04

Scope + Delivery

The design included 14 classrooms, a main hall, a kitchen, a studio, and a specialist food technology classroom providing an excellent learning environment for the children.

Additionally we completed external landscape works and a multi-use games area (MUGA), to facilitate outdoor learning and physical activity.

Throughout the project our design teams frequently implemented measures to provide an efficient and user friendly school. For instance, our skilled Structural Engineers opted for a Structurally Insulated Panel System (SIPS) to form the main structure of the school. The benefits of this Modern Method of Construction (MMC) include its time and cost effectiveness. In addition the accuracy in fabrication of the SIPS as well as high levels of insulation allows for improved air tightness and thermal efficiency reducing energy costs for the school.

During the design stages, our architectural team made use of a 3D modelling system to allow for co-ordination and clash detection, to enhance the quality and accuracy of their design. This included importing the information provided by the SIPS manufacturers into the 3D model to assist in developing an accurate design for the interior of the school.

A further notable element of the design, implemented by our Mechanical and Electrical Engineering team, included a hybrid ventilation system in the form of Mechanically Ventilated Heat Recovery Units. This system draws in fresh air from the outside and heats and circulates this around the room. The benefits of such a system are that it provides fresh air, without having to rely on natural ventilation such as opening windows, enhancing the internal comfort for students and staff. As well as this, to ensure the sustainability of the school LED lighting and absence sensors were installed throughout.

Result

The new school was very well received by our client and the end users.

The internal and external design completed by our multi-disciplined design teams has provided a functional and aesthetically pleasing school for the pupils and staff to enjoy. We are extremely pleased with the fantastic school which has been developed by all involved.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More

Project

Barrow CEVC Primary School

Brief

A decision to expand the school’s age range to include year 5 and 6 pupils meant additional teaching space was required.

These additional classbases were needed to provide accommodation for the extended age range, increasing the school’s capacity from 150 to 210 places. We were also asked to create a masterplan for a total of 315 places.

Key Info

Location:
Barrow, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

Project Type:
New Build

Client:
Suffolk County Council – Children and
Young People (CYP)

End User:
Barrow CEVC Primary School

Project Completion:
October 2020

Project Value:
£794,000

Contractor:
Brooks & Woods Ltd

Contract Type:
JCT Standard

Disciplines:
Architecture, Electrical Engineering, Estates, Interior Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Mechanical Engineering, Quantity Surveying, Structural Engineering

Imagery

01
02
03
04
05
/
01
02
03
04
05

Scope

Despite the challenges of COVID-19, we worked collaboratively to build a new block which holds 2 modern classrooms, a group room, and toilet facilities.

Construction was put on hold following the Government’s lockdown announcement but our team worked hard to accelerate the programme and ensure the school’s deadline was still met.

The new building complements the listed building on site (through material and colour choices), whilst introducing contemporary construction in the form of a butterfly roof to create its own identity. Large overhangs provide shelter and enhance solar gain. We incorporated a natural ventilation strategy which included tall windows to create bright, airy rooms that enhance the learning environment. A large feature corner window connects the building to the rest of the site.

By using the full functionality of our 3D modelling software, we developed a co-ordinated BIM model to run clash detection simulations at the design stage, thereby reducing clashes and queries on-site.

Testimonial

“Our thanks go to everyone involved in the project during this difficult time; the professionalism and resilience from all concerned has been second to none.”

Helen Ashe, Headteacher, Barrow CEVC Primary School

Result

Our carefully considered masterplan easily enables future expansion to accommodate growth and educational demands.

The design surpassed expectations of a school building and has a high-quality finish featuring exceptional attention to detail.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More

Project

Robert Clack

School

Brief

Robert Clack School needed to address the issue of a lack of sports facilities.

Indoor games were limited due to the accessibility of the existing small gymnasium. The school was unable to offer basketball, badminton, fitness or dance classes and the majority of sports had to be played on outdoor pitches.

The London Borough of Barking and Dagenham Council looked to construct a new sports hall which would contain four courts, a multi-use studio, a dance studio and changing rooms. In addition to offering the National Curriculum across the entire subject range, this project also aimed to respond to the significant population growth within the area.

Key Info

Type:
Feasibility, New Build

Value:
£4 million

Location:
Dagenham

Client:
Barnes Construction – on behalf of London
Borough of Barking and Dagenham Council

End User:
Robert Clack School

Contractor:
Barnes Construction

Project Duration:
10 months

Disciplines:
Architecture, Carbon + Energy Design + Management, Client Adviser, Electrical Engineering, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture, Mechanical Engineering

Imagery

01
02
03
04
05
06
07
08
09
010
/
01
02
03
04
05
06
07
08
09
010

Scope

We were commissioned to design a sports facility which needed to follow the key principles laid out by Sport England in the design guidance note: ‘Sports Hall – Design & Layouts’.

It was also necessary for the design to adhere to Sport England Optimum Package standards.

The external design allows the school to develop their vision of creating useable spaces externally with consideration to landscape plazas to the south and east of the development. A balanced combination of hard and soft landscape design has been incorporated to suit the building’s scale and function. Careful consideration has been given to the layout of the building to ensure potentially noisy areas are located away from the nearby residential properties. The timber style appearance was chosen to fit in with the surrounding tree landscape design and site boundary. The red brick of the fitness and dance studios enables a joined up approach with the existing buildings on site. To meet the needs of the high level of activity, a facing block was integrated into the design to provide a natural but robust treatment.

Internally, the design provides a secure lobby entrance through to a main foyer. Corridor links lead directly to changing rooms, sports facilities and dance and fitness studios. These corridors have been designed to maintain a direct approach for pupils and minimise travel distances. Natural ventilation has been used where possible. A mechanical system has been placed on the roof to provide a fully compliant building design. This system is surrounded by high walls of timber effect, masonry and louvres to lower noise levels whilst maintaining an aesthetic appearance to the building elevations.

Testimonial

“Collaborative working at its best enabled us to develop a winning bid to deliver a new sports hall, dance studios and changing rooms for the Robert Clack School in Dagenham. Partnering with Concertus for their previous experience and expertise ensured that we jointly developed and delivered to the brief and budget, within the available timescale and to high levels of quality. From the building’s orientation and juxtaposition to the innovative CHP heating and power solutions, the Concertus designers considered and delivered to the brief.”

Mark Bailey, Barnes Construction

Result

This fit for purpose sports accommodation has resulted in a wider range of activities being available to pupils.

The building has achieved a 35% reduction in carbon emissions and met the project budget.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More

Project

Sybil Andrews Academy
– Masterplan

Brief

We were asked to produce a Master Plan for the design and construction of a new secondary school at Moreton Hall in Bury St Edmunds.

Our brief was to design a school that would incorporate core facilities capable of supporting 900 students, with teaching accommodation for 600. The Master Plan also had to demonstrate the ability of the site to expand to accommodate 1400 pupils, plus a sixth form, by 2031.

Key Info

Client:
Suffolk County Council – CYP

Project Completion:
July 2015

Disciplines:
Architecture, Building Services Design, Estates + Development Management, Landscape Architecture, Quantity Surveying + Cost Consultancy

Why did they choose us?

  • We have a high degree of expertise and experience in the Education Sector.
  • We have recent knowledge gained through acting as client advisors on two new EFA Academies in Suffolk, Felixstowe and Ipswich. This experience also provided us with an understanding of how academies are looking to deliver education and set out their buildings.
  • We had recently completed phase 2 of 3 of a new high school at Pakefield, Lowestoft.
  • We had a great local knowledge gained from designing and constructing two Primary Schools within the Moreton Hall Area.
  • We demonstrated our ability to work with a large number of stakeholders, understand their varying requirements whilst ensuring that the design provides a high quality educational project.
  • We had the ability and capacity to produce a fully co-ordinated design within a short time period.
  • We had the vision to consider the scheme holistically, and were able to integrate phase 1 and the requirements of the wider Masterplan as the school and site develops. Our designers were able to include flexibility within the design.
  • We possessed the ability to liaise and communicate with adjacent developers to ensure coherent development for the local area.

What did we do differently?

  • We reacted and delivered on a quick turnaround.
  • We engaged with the end user regarding layout and design at an early stage.
  • We considered the needs of the client, the Academy and the pupils; all of whom had separate requirements and priorities.
  • The fully coordinated design was developed in-house.
  • The 3D modelling included structures and services.
  • We produced high quality visuals and a fly through.
  • Through the design we looked to remove / minimize risks for: site safety and security, pupil protection, vehicle and pupil separation and bullying.
  • We were able to provide a design which allows for shared usage by the community and the school, whilst maintaining secure separation.

Fly Through

Testimonial

“We demonstrated our ability to work on a quick turnaround with a large number of stakeholders, understanding their varying requirements whilst ensuring that the design provides a high quality educational project.”

Charles Coulson, Associate Director, Concertus

Result

The finished Master Plan comprised buildings that were designed to be adaptable and flexible.

The buildings can also be adapted as the school grows and in response to changes in the school curriculum. The core admin and other infrastructure areas are designed to support ease of movement and access as well as management of the school and the site. Specialist classrooms, practical areas and sports facilities were incorporated in accordance with BB98 & BB103 guidance.

In addition, the design of the school maximises opportunities for community use outside the school day, through consideration of access, service zoning and security needs. It also incorporates good practice in relation to environmental sustainability. The external environment is inspiring and makes provision for formal, informal and habitat spaces along with sports pitches. Appropriate levels of parking are included within the Master Plan.

The design and location of the heart building has been carefully considered to provide a strong visual feature to the school and wider environment. It has been positioned along the western boundary to act as an acoustic break and light shield between the school site and the neighbouring residential development, whilst providing a strong visual presence to people entering Moreton Hall via the new Eastern Relief Road. The entrance is strongly emphasised through the continuation of structural framing beyond the building line and this draws people into the building whilst blurring the distinction between internal and external space.

Designed around the ethos of a central heart space the building looks to minimise the use of corridors by maximizing social and group spaces that can be used flexibly. Externally the main heart building is designed to express its structural frame with the structural columns situated on the outside of the external walls. This, combined with the lower roof line to the academic hall, positioned within the centre of the building, breaks up the elevation and the overall mass of the building. The western elevation has been designed to create intrigue and interest in the school.

Through the use of slender windows, glimpses are provided into the school, whilst minimising the issues of overlooking neighbouring properties. Larger elements of curtain glazing are then used to provide views through the building and into the school site. The eastern elevation is designed with large areas of glazing to reflect the way in which the heart building opens out into the site and provides a connection with the separate teaching blocks. Internally, the building has been designed to create a large, flexible teaching space which is predominately based around the Learning Resource and Dining areas.

Teaching Blocks 1-3 have been designed with the same principles of creating a central heart / group space with teaching accommodation arranged along the southern elevations to maximise natural day lighting. Services and group spaces are positioned along the southern elevation. Teaching Block 4 has been designed so that the classrooms are positioned along the northern elevation to enable the art classrooms to benefit from north light, whilst creating a courtyard space for external teaching and forming an edge to the proposed development line.

The strong vertical lines created by the structure of the heart building and the positioning of the buildings on the site have been continued into the Landscape design. This theme is common to all the buildings, where bands of colour are proposed across the glazed sections, whilst instances of coloured panels are stretched along the remainder of the elevations.

Designed around the same architectural principles, the Sports Building is clearly identified as having a different usage on the site. The entrances for the public and pupils are highlighted within the elevations through the use of strong coloured rain screen panels, whilst the sports hall provides a softening to the site through the use of timber cladding.

The use of rain screen cladding to the majority of the elevations was proposed due to its durability and low maintenance. Furthermore thermally broken aluminium framed windows and low pitch single ply membranes, or three layer felt roofs, concealed behind parapets, were used to achieve good sustainability.

Key sustainable elements in the design include:

  • Biomass Boiler proposed as main heating source.

  • PV arrays to be provided on the roofs of the teaching blocks and sports building.

  • A site designed to ensure that a sustainable drainage scheme is possible, together with a large degree of permeable paving areas with attenuation ponds and swales.

  • Thermally efficient building with low u-values which exceed the requirements of building regulations. The scheme is currently under construction and the school has been named the Sybil Andrews Academy and will be run by the Samuel Ward Academy Trust.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More

Project

Sybil Andrews Academy

Brief

The new school had to have the ability to expand to accommodate 1,400 pupils, plus a sixth form by 2031.

Due to significant residential development in Bury St Edmunds we were asked to masterplan a new high school. After completing the Master Plan, we were asked to project manage on behalf of the client the construction of the new school. Our brief was to follow through on implementing our design proposal and deliver the completed Sybil Andrews Academy in the Autumn Term of 2016. Construction would incorporate core facilities capable of initially supporting 900 students, with teaching accommodation for 600. Being a major project for Suffolk the new high school attracted a high political profile and performance to budget and programme was paramount.  With a prominent location on the approach into Bury, the new building was also required to be a landmark building.

 

Key Info

Location:
Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

Client:
Suffolk County Council

End User:
Samuel Ward Academy Trust
/ Sybil Andrews Academy

Contractor:
Barnes Construction

Project Completion:
December 2016

Project Value
£16 million

Project Duration:
18 months

Disciplines:
Architecture, Building Services Design, Estates + Development Management, Interior Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Project Management, Quantity Surveying + Cost Consultancy

Scope + Delivery

The building contains large and flexible teaching spaces, which are predominately based around the learning resource and dining areas.

Sybil Andrews Academy was designed and constructed so that the building provides flexibility and can be adapted as the Academy grows, and in response to changes in the school curriculum. Designed around the ethos of a central heart space, the building looks to minimise the use of corridors by maximizing social and group spaces that can be used flexibly. The building contains large and flexible teaching spaces, which are predominately based around the learning resource and dining areas. The approach is continued within Teaching Block 1 where classrooms break out into a central group teaching and social space. The use of the auditorium staircase provides further smaller presentation and tutoring opportunities. The first phase of works also included a four court sports hall with a studio, gym and changing facilities to Sports England standards.

The location of the Heart building has been carefully considered to provide a strong visual feature to the Academy and its wider environment. It has been positioned along the western boundary to act as an acoustic break and light shield between the school site and the neighbouring residential development. The positioning also provides a strong visual presence to people entering Moreton Hall via the new Eastern Relief Road. The entrance is strongly emphasised through the continuation of structural framing beyond the building line and this draws people into the building whilst blurring the distinction between internal and external space.

The western elevation creates intrigue through the use of slender windows, which provide glimpses into the school, whilst minimising the issues of overlooking neighbouring properties. Larger elements of curtain glazing are then used to provide views through the building and into the school site. The eastern elevation comprises large areas of glazing to reflect how the heart building opens out into the site and provides a connection with the separate teaching blocks. The core admin and other infrastructure areas support ease of movement and access as well as management of the school and site. There is a strong relationship with the outdoor environment through the views from stairwells, curtain glazing and doorways. Externally across the whole site, paved areas follow a form and pattern to delineate the spaces and guide the users. The external environment is inspiring and provides formal and informal spaces along with sports pitches.

The opportunities have been maximised for community use outside the academic day through consideration of access, service zoning and security needs. This includes a Biomass boiler, photovoltaic panels, mechanical heat recovery and fully considered building orientation, resulting in an ‘A’ rating for energy performance. The building also incorporates good practice in relation to environmental sustainability.

Aware, from the start of construction, that the team would be working to a very challenging and tight schedule, the aim was to ensure that an extremely close working relationship was established between all stakeholders and the construction team. During the construction period, there were times when design amendments and alterations were being made alongside the construction works. This meant there was a need for total transparency and collaboration between the Barnes and Concertus teams both off and on-site.

The foul drainage solution included discharging to the new infrastructure yet to be constructed.  Due to delays in the development of the inner relief road and the adjacent business park the main sewer remained incomplete at the end of the project. To support the client, the project manager negotiated with the ground works contractor for the road and main sewer, to bring forward the holding tank associated with the new pumping station. This was achieved and the foul drainage from the new school was able to discharge to the holding tank. The project manager liaised with the main contractor to arrange for regular monitoring and pumping out of the holding tank.  This solution allowed the Academy to occupy and use the buildings immediately after handover, mitigating a significant delay.

Imagery

01
02
03
04
05
06
07
08
/
01
02
03
04
05
06
07
08

Testimonial

“It is a real credit to all those involved and to the collaborative ‘will-do’ approach taken by the designers and contractors alike. The students at Sybil Andrews Academy are in awe of their surroundings which act as a real inspiration in and out of the classroom. Sybil Andrews Academy is an incredible achievement in designing and building a new 21st century educational and sports facility from a standing start – and all within two years.”

Tim Coulson, Chief Executive of the Samuel Ward Academy Trust

Result

The finished project was shortlisted for the RICS Awards 2018 in the Community Benefit and Design Through Innovation categories.

Construction was completed mid-November and the children moved into the new school on Monday 5 December 2016. Divided into three key buildings; Heart Building, Teaching Block 1 and the Sports Building, the academy provides a stimulating educational environment.

Work With Us

We work with clients in both the private and
public sector. Contact us to start your project.

Contact UsLearn More