The pupil intake age at Parkstone Grammar has been lowered from 12 to 11 years, bringing it into line with others in the Poole area. To accommodate the additional students the school needed to expand its teaching facilities. We provided structural and infrastructure engineering for a new Art & Technology block, additional parking and the refurbishment of the existing Art & Technology building.
The new block is located on a sloping site close to the front entrance of the school. Ground modelling helped determine the optimum build level, minimising groundwork costs. Build time was also a challenge as refurbishment of the older building could only commence once the new one was ready. The school remained open throughout.
The new three-storey building has a grid layout, providing 19 classrooms, staff areas, stores and toilets. Accommodation is located on both sides of the central circulation corridors. On the upper level the roof is stepped back, affording a terrace across two bays of the grid. The outdoor study terrace is enclosed by an upstand parapet and accessed from the circulation corridor. In future, the terrace could be roofed for additional classrooms.
The continuous concrete strip foundations support sleeper walls. Vertical slots punched in the walls provide windows with solid inner leaf infill. The floor slabs are precast concrete sitting on the sleeper walls, topped with precast roof slabs. A small plant area is located on the roof to provide AHU ventilation. The aesthetic concrete walls in the classrooms encourage natural ventilation by maximising the thermal mass exposed to the air.