A new specialist school for 150 pupils aged between 2-19 years with profound and multiple learning difficulties has recently completed in the London Borough of Hackney using PEFC certified Austrian spruce and pine sourced and manufactured by Stora Enso Building and Living.
The new three-storey School, which is expected to achieve BREEAM Very Good, has been built by Main Contractor McLaren Construction and installed by specialist timber engineers, Eurban. Designed by Avanti Architects, Ickburgh School is being delivered through Hackney Schools for the Future Limited (HSFL), a partnership formed by London Borough of Hackney and Mouchel Babcock Education (MBE) in 2008.
Building with CLT provided a significant reduction to the construction programme and the project was delivered 20% faster and provided a 2% saving on cost against the project value. In addition to its speed and cost saving benefits, the structural spanning characteristics of CLT lent itself to extremely bespoke issues of a PMLD School.
The School, which has been designed to evoke a feeling of 'home from home', has five 'teaching clusters' or 'learning suites' that offer the pupils a clearly identifiable 'home base' with their own front door, classroom, outdoor space and supporting structure and four 26 person sized lifts have been installed to take 2 or 3 pupils at a time to four of the five clusters which are located on the upper floors.
At a recent event to celebrate the completion of the new School, London Borough of Hackney’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, Councillor Antoinette Bramble commented "projects like Ickburgh have a special place in my heart” adding “before becoming a Cabinet Member I worked in additional needs education, so I really understand and appreciate the value of high quality, purpose-built provision like this.”
Internally Ickburgh has been designed to embrace CLT's natural qualities which give the building a feeling of richness and warmth. Each classroom space features the natural wood on its ceiling and one wall, and the School's entrance along with the main hall and one wall within the circulation areas of each teaching cluster is also left exposed.
The school is largely naturally ventilated with a limited amount of mechanical ventilation for hygiene facilities and to provide more flexibility for pupils with acute sensitivity to internal environmental conditions. Under floor heating, high levels of insulation, efficient boilers and PV panels on the roof help to meet the renewables obligation.
Client: London Borough of Hackney
Delivered by: Hackney Schools for the Future Limited (HSFL):
Architect: Avanti Architects
Main Contractor: McLaren Construction Ltd
Timber Engineer & Contractor: Eurban Ltd
CLT Manufacturer: Stora Enso Building and Living