The £6.7 million Glenbrook Primary School specified VELUX Ridgelight and VELUX Longlight solutions from the VELUX Commercial range
A rebuilt primary school in south-west London features high quality, stimulating learning spaces thanks to high levels of daylight provided by 45 VELUX Modular Skylights. The redevelopment of Glenbrook Primary School, in Clapham Gardens, was carried out under the Priority School Building Programme (PSBP).
The £6.7 million project was granted planning permission by Lambeth Council in October 2017, with demolition of the existing school building taking place in February 2018. A 52-week build programme was scheduled, and the new school was completed in early 2019 by Bowmer + Kirkland Ltd, who have been recognised for their work on PSBP projects.
Both VELUX Ridgelight and VELUX Longlight solutions from the VELUX Commercial range were specified for different areas of the school, to help meet the climate-based daylight modelling targets set by the Generic Design Brief (including Technical Annexes) that is part of the PSBP process.
Daylight specification as part of the PSBP
The PSBP is a government scheme that rebuilds or refurbishes schools in poor condition. Main contractors, like Bowmer + Kirkland Ltd, work with a supply chain of sub-contractors and designers to deliver consistent, reliable and proven solutions.
Meeting budget and timescale, whilst also achieving the building performance targets, is critical to the success of a project like Glenbrook Primary School. The prefabricated nature of VELUX Modular Skylights meant design work for Glenbrook could proceed in the knowledge that the standardised modules could easily be incorporated into the proposals.
“Daylighting analysis is carried out on the initial design to highlight any areas that might be failing, and where VELUX Modular Skylights should be located,” explained Dan Rackham, Pre-construction Manager at Bowmer + Kirkland. The PSBP’s technical requirements seek to ensure that spaces not only have enough functional light, but that they are well-balanced and visually comfortable too.
Roof glazing helps to achieve this in a way that facade glazing alone cannot. To that end, a total of 45 skylight modules were installed at Glenbrook. All of them were fixed modules, as there was no need to provide comfort ventilation. “The school was designed to be ventilated without needing to open any windows,” said Dan. “Given the location of the site, it was important to make sure the ventilation provision was right without risking one of the facades failing acoustically.”
A number of corridor and circulation spaces were designed with the VELUX Longlight solution: one with a row of four modules, one with a row of five modules, and four areas each with a six module row. The modules were all 1000 x 1200mm, installed at a 15 degree angle.
The VELUX Ridgelight solution was employed over the library and small group room - a total of 12 modules, each 1000 x 3000mm, installed at 5 degrees with an integral beam, to create an overall clear opening of 6m x 6m. In effect, the design created a ‘mini-atrium’, and a diffused glazing specification aided the distribution of daylight into the school.
Easy-to-install products help the construction schedule
Meeting a tight building programme at the same time as achieving a high standard of construction quality is a difficult balancing act. It is made easier by specifying high quality products that are designed to be easy to install.
VELUX Modular Skylights are designed to work as a single system from the moment they are produced. That gives designers confidence when specifying them, and on site the modules fit together perfectly to create a seamless and watertight glass roof.
“The VELUX Modular Skylights are a first class product and very easy to install,” said Chris Allen, Design Manager at Bowmer + Kirkland Ltd. “Modular skylights are a key component for achieving daylight modelling targets and thermal comfort in the building. VELUX Commercial’s solutions help us deliver project certainty in the early phases, which in turn is replicated during the construction phase with speed of installation.”
An award-winning combination
Working on a confined inner city site offered its own challenges, but VELUX Commercial were able to play their part in helping everything run smoothly. “With sub-contractor buy-in, we utilised just in time deliveries to avoid delays,” added Chris. “VELUX Commercial’s customer service is always focused on assisting with the delivery of the project programme.”
VELUX Commercial products have been specified on all Bowmer + Kirkland school projects. The success of those projects has been recognised, with Bowmer + Kirkland winning a ‘Contractor of the Year’ award from the Department of Education. The award recognises their approach, culture and success as a framework contractor in bidding for and delivering school schemes.
To find out more about how VELUX Modular Skylights can contribute to your project, contact VELUX Commercial.