Leehurst Swan SchoolCommercial
The project involved providing a new bespoke multipurpose hall on a steeply sloping site situated at the entrance of the school. The specific core needs of the school were evaluated and the building was designed to compliment the existing group of buildings whilst having an architectural identity of its own.
The hall has been designed to accommodate the needs of the school for drama, concerts, functions, meetings and as a space in which children may eat their lunches. The school has been provided with a hall that will fulfil the functions required of it whilst meeting the standards required by the various bodies and regulations governing the design of school buildings. A hall which will be robust in use and one which will impose minimal maintenance requirements and costs on the school.
The northern side has been designed with glazed slide-over doors which will allow for an inter-relationship between the internal and external spaces. The use of large vertically opening sectional doors to this elevation allows the hall to be opened and extended in fine weather conditions to a semi-circular external gathering and seating area. The use of gabion stones and sympathetic planting utilises the steep gradient of the site to provide a pleasant area for the school community to congregate.
Access by those with disabilities has been improved by removing the existing flight of external stairs giving access to the classroom/facilities along the western boundary by utilising the provision of the access ramps provided at the front of the new hall to also overcome the change in levels that existing flight of external steps sought to address.
The building has carefully designed so as to keep its overall height and impact as low as is practical. To ensure that it is broken up and articulated both horizontally and vertically, brick clad external structural columns were used with brick band detailing and further articulation/movement effected by the carefully designed external stairs.