ENG DESIGNBUILDING SERVICES CONSULTANTS

EDUCATION PROJECT

PROJECT:

JUNIOR HOUSE

LOCATION:
St Albans, Hertfordshire
CLIENT:
St ALBANS HIGH SCHOOL for GIRLS
ARCHITECT:
INITIATIVES IN DESIGN
COST:
£1,500,000
Exterior phogograph

The entrance of the school

Photograph showing the well lit interior of the school's gym

Inside the school

The School

St Albans High School for Girls had no room for expansion on its main site. An office building was purchased in nearby Wheathampstead and converted to new accommodation for the junior school. Despite planning delays, the classrooms were completed on time, using a two-stage approach allowing the contractor to be appointed early and join the design team.

ReArchitecture

Wheathampstead House was originally a dwelling, set in 18 acres of gardens. It was converted into an air-conditioned office in the 1980s, complete with central lift core, partitioned offices and a raised floor with extensive data and electrical cabling. It has now been turned into a Junior House.

Natural Environment

Natural ventilation and radiator heating were preferred to a fully air conditioned, sealed building with high running costs. Cooling equipment was removed, the windows refurbished and the radiator heating modified to suit the new layout. Radiators are encased where the youngest children are taught.

Water Use

Schools have more washing facilities than an office, and need more hot water water and drainage. The new hot water system uses a plate heat exchanger. Initial planning avoided major changes on the lowest floor so that the concrete floors did not have to be cut for new drainage.

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