The local authority needed a new 315 pupil primary school with a 20 place nursery and 25 place pre-nursery, all within a defined budget of £4.8m and situated in the centre of live housing development of approximately 3,000 homes.
The project team of design, commercial, construction and facilities management experts was established more than a year before construction got underway. As there wasn’t a headteacher or sponsor for the Academy appointed at the project development phase, Sewell utilised past experience from previous primary school construction projects, along with tried and tested products and processes, to develop a functional, best value design. We engaged with parents and local residents from the very start of the project, through a variety of face to face forums to showcase the design and layout of the facility, along with regular newsletter updates. The 24/7 helpdesk number was made available to all residents, enabling members of the public to raise any queries, questions or complaints easily throughout the term of the project.
From the facilities management team’s input, every component of the building was chosen on past performance to enable excellence in the facility, the best life cycle and low running costs. This included photo voltaic panels to generate electricity and an intelligent building management system to remotely monitor and manage utility usage.
To ensure an efficient construction the project team also opted for a brick slip system. This would not only speeded up the construction, but minimise utility running costs for the school due to its enhanced thermal performance.
The design incorporated an external terrace space with adequate height balustrades enabling pupils to access the roof safely. Having an appreciation of the school’s location and the demand for pupil places, we opted for the structural steel frame design that would support the development of two additional classrooms on this terrace, should the school need to extend. A feasible future-proofed design consideration.
The nursery space was designed with separate entrances and facilities, such as staffroom and WCs, to cater for possible independence. Consideration for the integration of loose furniture and IT was also clearly set out in the construction programme in consultation with providers.
Subcontractors from our preapproved supply chain database that already met the Government’s Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) were invited to submit a competitive tender. Tenders were thoroughly scrutinised to guarantee the best team to carry out the works for the school. 86% of contractors selected were from local or regional companies, minimising the carbon footprint of the project. Prior to construction, we met with subcontractors to reinforce the high quality expectations set out within the tender package.
All operatives were given inductions and 58 toolbox talks were delivered throughout the development. These sessions enabled the team to continually reinforce the project KPIs around quality, efficiency and safety, and gave operatives an opportunity to raise queries or suggest alternative ways of collaboration across trades to drive further performance improvements.
To encourage excellence from the supply chain, the site manager carried out daily inspections and held weekly subcontractor meetings. As well as external audits, Sewell safety managers carried out safety audits and subcontractors carried out their own safety audits too, instilling ownership in the project.
We contributed to the area road sweeping team, keeping the area clean, and residents were offered window cleaning services, as well as support from the on site security teams who kept a watchful eye on their homes. We also supported the school and academy trust with new branding and design of the new school uniform, as well as their website.
Kingswood Parks Primary School was delivered on time, on budget and with zero defects and zero reportable accidents. With the selected academy trust becoming involved three months into the project, many of their preferences were taken into consideration in the reviewable design data meetings.
The project was rated as BREEAM Very Good, with environmental features including photo voltaic panels for electricity generation, a water attenuation system, which alleviates flooding, a daylight dimming system, which will dim the lights when sufficient daylight is available; saving on electricity.
A total of 99.91% of all site waste was recycled and the outside areas were transformed with raised planting areas for growing vegetables, a multi-use games area, an activity area including climbing wall and ancient woodland.
Having established such effective relationships with the Sewell team, the academy trust awarded the cleaning, reactive and planned preventative maintenance contract to Sewell Facilities Management.