We’re delighted to be part of the team that has enabled a new secondary school in Cheltenham for The Balcarras Academy Trust and Gloucestershire County Council to secure a resolution to grant planning permission. This school will be a key step in serving the area’s strong need for more spaces for pupils aged 11 to 16.
Working with construction partner Kier, and architects, AHR, our civils, structures, transport and building performance engineering teams supported the planning process and will now continue to provide design engineering consultancy services on the £30m, 900-pupil school. The design will take reference from its sister school, one of England’s highest performing comprehensive schools, Balcarras Academy.
This 7,900 sq m, two-storey school will include state-of-the-art facilities such as a 450-seat main hall with raised seating to create a performance space, four-court sports hall with sports gallery, all-weather pitches and a multi-use games area, which the local community will also be able to use outside of school hours.
Alongside our full structural design of the new school, our civil engineers are providing a Sustainable Urban Drainage System, along with a detailed cut and fill analysis that will enable 50,000 cubic metres of material to be retained and re-used on site.
As the school is a flagship project for Gloucestershire County Council, who declared a climate emergency in 2019, the target of achieving net zero carbon for the school once it is in operation is very important. The design will focus on passive design principles, incorporating natural light and natural ventilation. Our building performance engineers are helping achieve the net zero target using complex modelling software, including roof-mounted solar panels and passive low energy ventilation techniques.
Construction is scheduled to begin in Autumn 2020.
Image courtesy of AHR.