Design Awards 2013
Notre Dame Primary School & Elie St Early Years Centre
DRS Project Management & Design
Winner: Design Award
Refurbishment and extension of Dowanhill Primary School (Category C Listed, by local practice Steel & Balfour, 1894). A restricted urban site in Conservation Area. Energy efficient, low carbon sustainable design high client priority, balanced with conservation of 117 year old landmark. Local stakeholders consulted throughout design and construction phases.
Design solution: retention of best architectural features; removal of physical barriers; new extension to expand school capacity while maximising outdoor play space and complementing original building and local neighbourhood.
1894 wing contains classrooms, toilets, staff bases and administration offices over four storeys, wrapped around sky-lit atrium which retains original function of ‘front room’ and circulation zone. New front entrance at first floor linked to adjacent on-street car spaces and public park by raised pedestrian access deck providing outdoor play and bike shelter. Retained decorative roof structure, balconies and plasterwork features. Original radiators, parquet flooring and doors refurbished and retained.
Extension’s five storeys house nursery, assembly/dining/drama hall, kitchen, library, games hall, changing rooms. Aligned with existing eaves and facades, clad with terracotta rainscreen cladding system of multiple hues based on adjacent sandstone colours. Fenestration design maximises privacy, daylight, views, and controls solar gain. New informality complements original’s regularity, with special features including roof terrace and frameless glass bay window.
Super-insulated envelope incorporates recycled wood fibre insulation. High performance replacement windows and skylights. Geothermal Heat System feeds refurbished cast iron radiators and underfloor screeds. Heat-recovery mechanical ventilation. Energy efficient light fittings and controls. Water-efficient sanitaryware. 100% barrier free.
Opened August 2013, on time.