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St.Columba's School, Girdwood Building

LocationKilmacolm

ClientSt.Columba's School

StatusCompleted October 2016

Space management had become challenging at St. Columba's, this project gave opportunity to provide additional teaching area and allows facilities to be grouped by discipline, giving clarity to the school campus. Thirteen new classrooms, a new library, pastoral care suite and social / recreational spaces as well as additional teacher bases are accommodated in the new building.

Set in and around two existing traditional villas, The Girdwood Building has a sedum roof and nestles low into the site. Sympathetic design was crucial to the project as neighbour support was key to implementation. Neighbouring gardens were used during the construction phase, with garden reinstatements being carried out once the boundary wall had been reconstructed. Our direct engagement was key to securing this access and agreeing the design and detail of the gardens.

New external social spaces around the new school buildings give areas for different rhythms of play, the school had many areas that leant themselves to fast play, but lacked space for social interaction and quiet reflection. Teaching courtyard and external classroom give opportunity for outdoor learning and dramatics, making the most of the landscape.

The Rector appreciated the opportunity to talk through his vision of the landscaping, especially as a key driver for the project was to develop quality external social spaces for pupils. On top of that the desire for a social courtyard and an outdoor teaching area have been perfectly realised.

Mick McLaughlin - Depute Rector