Pentrehafod Comprehensive School

  • Location

    Swansea

  • Client

    Morgan Sindall

  • Value

    £11m

  • Completion

    2018

  • BREEAM Rating

    Very Good

Smart use of materials – inside and out – radically improved the sustainable value of the school

The refurbishment and remodelling of Pentrehafod Comprehensive School was a major project for the City and County of Swansea. As the development incorporated refurbishment, new build areas and external works the development was registered as a bespoke assessment with the BRE. The school now accommodates 1,000 pupils from ages 11-16 and now meets current educational space standards and connects two buildings with a double height central social space to welcome staff, pupils and visitors.

A main focus of this extensive refurbishment was to improve the building fabric. Thermographic surveys were completed prior to development in order to pin-point areas of improvement and new materials sourced had high green guide ratings with lower embodied carbon. In addition robust materials were incorporated for all areas of high pedestrian traffic and protection measures were fitted to all doors and stairs of regular use to maximise longevity.

Another area the client wanted to focus on was the reduction in water demand. Water consumptions were monitored prior to the refurbishment and low flow taps and showers along with low flush cisterns were specified to reduce the overall water demand. The development works included fitting a mains water leak detection system and shut-off valves for sanitary areas when the facilities become vacant along with sub-metering areas of high consumption such as the kitchen and food technology teaching spaces.

The external works enhanced ecology and biodiversity where possible. This included eradicating Japanese knotweed within the site and using environmentally friendly horticultural techniques in landscaping, such as use of peat-free materials, minimal use of herbicides and pesticides, and selection of plants that rely upon precipitation only. In addition to this bird and bat boxes were erected in suitable areas as confirmed by the Ecologist.