As one of our most ancient and ubiquitous alchemies, science continues to be a vital part of a child’s education.
Imagine the wonder for the students at Ravenswood School for Girls when they arrived back from Summer holidays in January 2016 and began their walk down the 50 metre “Corridor of Science”. Upon entering this awe-inspiring space, the most obvious facet is that every corner of this hi-tech Science and Technology Centre has been built with science in mind.
In constant consultation with the School, the Streetbuild team and Project Managers (Sandrick Project Directions), worked alongside each other for seven productive months. Having already completed Labs 1 and 2 in Stage One together in early 2015, it was a joy to be working with such a professional team yet again.
With a broad scope in mind, the Streetbuild mission was to complete the following:
Science and Technology Centre: an additional 5 laboratories, 2 classrooms, 1 break-out room, 1 microscope lab, 2 prep rooms, 1 prep admin room, 1 chemical store room and 1 student store room. All included high-tech, state of the art appliances and finishes.
Level 2, Block G: The staff area on Level 2 was re-designed and re-vamped in order to house over 70 staff members. Internal modifications were to be made to walls in order to change a poorly-lit, enclosed multi-roomed area into a bright, airy and inviting environment.
It included numerous staff areas for the various subjects on offer, meeting rooms, kitchen facilities, library areas for staff resources and informal areas with wide screen TVs for both recreation and teaching purposes. Streetbuild undertook numerous renovations to the existing floor layout, laid new carpet, applied new paint on the tired and dated walls and installed all new custom built cabinetry and joinery.
The vision for the literary area was to have colourful, comfortable couches, plus a very impressive, yet functional state-of-the-art open plan kitchen. On this level, there are large sky-lights to make use of the beautiful natural light which flows through, along with a new lift to connect the two levels.
Block F: The concrete western staircase in this block was substantially demolished and reconstructed to accommodate the change in levels. Also, in a first for Streetbuild, the Hi-Tech Centre linkway was installed with Pavegen Tiles. Pavegen Tiles generate energy whenever they are walked on. A computer monitor in the Linkway shows the amount of energy created and the LED lights concealed within the feature ceiling light up to reflect the expenditure of that energy. This is a very creative means of technology and showcases science just in the act of walking through the Linkway.
Externally:The school wanted to make sure the courtyard was an area where the staff could conduct outdoor classes and experiments. Therefore, the centre courtyard received a major refurbishment, including new paths and landscaping. This area forms a link between all of the new rooms. Additionally, a large plant area was created in an environmentally sensitive area that was dominated by a 40 year old English Oak Tree. This meant that all works had to be undertaken in a manner that prevented any damage to the tree and its substantial root system; a perfect example of environmentally-sustainable construction.
Other Works: Three existing labs and a Prep Room were converted into teaching classrooms. This was not on the original scope and had to be done within the allocated time frame in order to be ready for when students arrived back from holidays.
As with Stage 1, there is a C-Bus system that controls the lighting, blinds, automatic sliding doors and air conditioning. A Building Monitoring System (BMS) was also installed to allow the school to control and monitor power consumption.
The Window System is a specially fabricated 500mm wide section that allows for fixed glass on one side and either display cabinets with Cowdroy Sliding Doors or white-backed glass for whiteboards on the other side.
Labs have 80-inch touch screen televisions in each room. They serve as useful teaching aides for both students and teachers. The underfloor structure, ceilings and services are exposed to allow the students to see and understand the building structure.
Ravenswood School for Girls’ new Science and Technology Centre is a truly inspiring Educational Centre with Science and Teaching facilities. The opportunity for students to learn in such a special environment will make the education process more captivating and rewarding.
The Streetbuild team successfully managed weather delays, along with numerous design changes throughout the construction. Practical Completion was achieved on the original contract date - 22nd January 2016. Much to the excitement of students and teachers alike, the new Science and Technology Centre was open for classes on the first day of Term 1.
Streetbuild is very proud of what we have achieved here and we wish to thank everyone who was involved in bringing this together.
Completed 22nd January 2016