The latest project as part of the school development masterplan that we have been involved in since 1999. The new Art Building and Fitness Centre were designed by different architects, but the project was delivered as one campus development
The school site is restricted, not just in plan but also because it is above the Network Rail tunnel serving Marylebone station. The Art Building location is fixed on plan by the tunnel vent shaft relocated when the school was built in the 1970s; while the Fitness Centre had to fit beneath playground level but above the crown of the tunnel. The pool and its plantroom were at the same level as the tunnel only 5m away.
Detailed construction sequence proposals had to be agreed with Network Rail; a ground movement analysis, prepared by Geotechnical Consulting Group, showed that the excavation for the gym raft slab could be carried out in 2m wide strips to limit the predicted tunnel movement to no greater than that during the 1970s construction. Movement monitoring during the work showed very little movement and so we gained Network Rail's agreement to wider strips, saving on reinforcement couplers and simplifying installation of the drainage cast within the raft.
To help create light spaces, both the Art Building and the pool ceiling were built in a light coloured fair-faced concrete using a limestone filler.