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Buildings, Maintenance, Refurbishment & Design

Modular classrooms tackle shortages C

oncerns continue to grow over a shortage of school places as it emerged that the number of pupils in the state education system will grow by 1m to over 8m by 2014. Here, Bertrand Quenot, Managing Director at Elliott, explains why a modular classroom solution can provide schools with a cost effective method of avoiding a shortage of places. “The hike in number of pupils in primary and secondary education is being driven by an increasing birth rate across England combined with an influx of migrants. As a result, forecasts are predicting that some children may struggle to find a place – particularly in their first choice school. As pupil numbers continue to grow we are often asked about the best way forward when it comes to creating more classroom spaces. For instance, we were recently commissioned by the Greenfield and Pulloxhill Academy in Bedfordshire to design and install a single storey, semi- permanent building to be used as a teaching block and hall. The management team selected our modular classroom solution because of our willingness to identify ways of bringing the strict delivery date forward, where practical, to minimise the disruption to the staff and pupils and the general running of the school.

Our design and site management team spent a considerable amount of time in dialogue with the customer at tender and post order stage to help identify opportunities to reduce timescales. As part of following this through, we provided weekly reviews of progress against milestones for the duration of the project.

The building itself comprises twelve modules in two blocks of six, with variable roof heights and connected by a link way. The space was separated into two areas, a teaching block and a hall. Total value of the contract was £403,000. Our full turnkey solution included groundworks, electrical installation, plumbing, fire detection and alarm system. “Our hall was just too small for the number of children we had, and the classrooms were not big enough for them,” said Annette McCullion,

Headteacher at Greenfield C of E School. “The children are really enjoying the new space they have, and the staff have just been incredible. It has been a real team effort.”

Latest modular systems are helping deliver high quality, value for money school buildings that address the shortage of school places. Aside from that they meet stringent building performance and sustainability requirements, whilst providing schools with a cost effective way forward.”

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Kawneer systems help new school get a BREEAM “Excellent” report

Runcorn’s Grange School features glazing by Kawneer, just a few miles away G

lazing systems from leading architectural aluminium supplier Kawneer have helped a new £24million school to achieve a BREEAM “Excellent” rating.

Two types of Kawneer’s curtain walling are complemented by AA®601TE top-hung casement and AA®601TE parallel opening windows as well as AA®605 low/medium- duty swing doors and series 10D light/medium-duty commercial entrance doors at The Grange School in Runcorn. Just a few miles from Kawneer’s production facility, the new school features the Kawneer systems, including AA®100 and AA®110 zone-drained curtain walling,

with 50mm and 65mm sightlines respectively, throughout four two-storey wings located around a central “heart” space and public hub.

Designed by Aedas architects, who are regular specifiers of Kawneer systems, the in-situ concrete-framed building caters for 1,350 three to 16-year-olds and is shaped to provide learning zones that give identity to its various facilities.

A contiguous ribbon of flexible learning space wrapped around the central hub, it maximises natural daylight and ventilation, features that helped with its BREEAM rating.

The Kawneer systems, including

rooflights above the central hub, were installed by specialist sub-contractor Anaco Systems for main contractor Galliford Try as part of the £50million Halton Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme. Chris Le Flohic, senior technician with

Aedas architects, said: “The Kawneer products were the best and met all the required criteria very well. “It was the main feature in one

location, the main entrance, and it was used to break up the brick façade. It interfaces very well with the other materials but that was one of the reasons it was chosen. It also forms an architectural feature to the library and staff room as it has an expressed noising cap.”

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May 2014

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