Gordon Infant School
Client London Borough of Redbridge
Consultant Mott MacDonald
Value £3.6M

Gordon Infant School

The London Borough of Redbridge awarded Cosmur the Gordon Primary School community school expansion project to meet Ilford’s growing demand for primary school places. We delivered part refurbishment and extension works which increased capacity from 180 2FE infant school pupils to 240 2FE Primary School pupils, a total intake of 420 four-to-eleven-year-olds.

The works were completed in two phases:

Phase 1 involved enabling works, temporary accommodation, services, refurbishment of the school kitchen, external security works and new Multi Use Games Area (MUGA) works. The refurbishment of the kitchen area took place over the summer holidays.

Phase 2 was split into two sections: Section 1 comprised demolition works of the existing area to allow for the construction of the new build extension to the rear of the building and the entrance reception. Section 2 was the construction of the new two storey classroom block, remodelling of the existing areas and completion of the remaining external works which included the removal of the temporary accommodation.

Scope of works:

  • The demolition of the existing Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Room.
  • Construct two modular buildings, two extensions including landscaping and refurbishment of class rooms and staff rooms and toilets etc.
  • A two storey block extension of eight classrooms with a hall, toilets and circulation areas.
  • Internal remodelling of the existing school spaces.
  • Associated services and external works.

Challenges:

  • Delivering modular units within a restrictive site of narrow residential roads and limited access
  • Ensuring the design intent and sourcing of materials evident in the Employers Requirements matched the schools aspirations in terms of available ‘As Built’ services drawings.
  • Working within an occupied school.
  • Site security.
  • Maintaining fire access routes.
  • Minimising disruption caused by noise and dust

Solutions:

  • Careful logistical planning based on meetings with Redbridge Council Capital and Asset Management team for agreed access and extensive pre-commencement site surveys helped identify contamination, structural integrity and the layout of the existing services.
  • Our Site Manager conducted weekly meetings with the school to ensure aspirations were captured and specifications agreed prior to commencing work on site.
  • Our site set-up plans arranged through the gates if the MOD on Gordon Road helped ease local congestion and ensured minimal disruption to day to day school operations with:
    • Clearly segregated working areas
    • Solid timber security hoarding.
    • Detailed traffic management plans included pre-booked delivery schedules agreed with all operatives and suppliers which avoided disruption to critical ‘pick-up’ and ‘drop-off’ times.
    • Agreed fire strategy plan ensured exit routes remained clear at all times.
  • Excellent communications were maintained throughout with over 100 pre-start letters, monthly updates and up to date community noticeboard at the site entrance.
  • Community liaison included letter drops to neighbours and residents of work activities and monthly newsletters. We established an excellent relationship with the neighbouring Ilford Army Reserve Centre, who allowed delivery of modular units via their parade grounds for which we made a thank you donation to the local MODs charity
  • School liaison included site visits with “Ivor Goodsite”, hunt the hazard board and deluxe fun packs purchased from Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS), a ‘grow a sunflower completion’,
  • The scheme was Cosmur’s 100th Considerate Constructors Scheme and our Site Manager; Rob Bush achieved high scores of 40.

“We understand that it is difficult working at a school during term time, but adhering to our safeguarding procedures and working with us around our school day means that we continue to be able to ensure the safety of everyone on the school premises.” Ms R Greaves, Head Teacher