Prep School, Austin Friars

The commission was awarded through an architectural competition to design a complete replacement Prep, Pre-Prep and Kindergarten facility. The £3.2m building includes a hall, library, ten class bases, a circular reading room, administration offices and staff resource areas. From the outset we proposed a strong green approach to the scheme which was well received and supported by the Governors. The orientation of the building maximises solar gain in the double height fully glazed ‘street’ that forms the corridor of the main wing. A series of stack ventilation chimneys allow for a natural environment within the class bases. A series of computer controlled ducts and dampers enable the re-distribution of the heated air from the corridor to the rest of the building. Glazing is minimised on the north face and the whole envelope is heavily insulated. Fresh air enters the building at low level and is pre-heated by radiator coils within the wall to ensure good air quality at a comfortable temperature.