Located on a brownfield site in a largely industrial area of Neath Port Talbot, South Wales, the design and construction of this new £4m school for over 100 pupils and community use, presented a series of complex and engineering challenges from the ground conditions to the structural design.
The building design is a series of circular pods from 8.5m in diameter to 19m, between one and two storeys in height linked by circulation corridors. It's steel frame, designed as three independent low bearing units and supported by columns within the depth of the walls to each pod, is constructed across a railway cutting with ill-compacted imported coal waste.
This directed the design to include over 500 vibrated stone columns, erected in less that two weeks and a vented hard core layer beneath the foundations, to safely accommodate the seriously contaminated land and hazardous gases.
Services: structural engineering, civil engineering