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State of the Art Teaching Hub Nears Completion

A new ‘state of the art’ teaching hub at Meole Brace School nears completion following several months work as part of Shropshire Council’s ambition to create sustainable education provision with future school expansions.

The project, designed by Shropshire Council’s Property Services Group (PSG), has been contracted to Read Construction and is one of the first to drive the change within the council towards more sustainable projects to meet the council’s 2030 carbon targets.

The new two-storey building will form the language teaching ‘hub’ for Meole Brace School and will also have an external recreation area.

Five classrooms will be provided along with a small group meeting room, a staff room, toilets and storage. The building will occupy a prominent site at the front of the school campus and built to the highest modern standards and will also be ‘zero-carbon’.

Initial concept design of new teaching hub

The project is targeting a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating. BREEAM is the world’s leading sustainability assessment method for master planning projects, infrastructure and buildings.

To further boost the environmental credentials, it has been built to the very stringent ’Passivhaus’ Classic standard, the first for the council and for Shropshire. This will result in a highly efficient building that consumes very little energy and delivers very high levels of comfort for all users of the building. A Passivhaus is a building in which thermal comfort can be achieved solely by post-heating or post-cooling the fresh air flow required for a good indoor air quality, without the need for additional recirculation of air.

An event was arranged recently to provide an update of the development attended by councillors and officers from Shropshire Council, PSG and Read Construction.

Left to right: Phil Wilson, Adam Dennett, Eilian Jones, Dawid Cloete, Karen Bradshaw, Cllr Jeff Anderson, Tim Smith, Harvey Gould, Cllr Kirstie Hurst-Knight, Carl Wellington and Peter Allen

Councillor Kirstie Hurst-Knight, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services who attended the event said:

“I was delighted to see the progress to date to what will be a fantastic new facility for Meole Brace School. It was great to be able to see and learn more about the design and construction of the new teaching hub building first-hand and ask questions which PSG and Read Construction expertly fielded

“Pupils will benefit from a state-of-the-art learning environment and the very latest facilities to help make sure they get the best possible outcome from their education.

“The new teaching hub at Meole Brace School is one of several projects we are investing in to secure high quality and sustainable provision of primary and secondary places in Shrewsbury and surrounding areas.”

Read Construction Director, Dawid Cloete said: “Read are delighted to be working with Shropshire Council and PSG to deliver Shropshire’s first Passivhaus scheme, prioritising net zero carbon emissions whilst delivering a state-of-the-art education facility. The project represents an important  milestone in Read’s own Zero Carbon journey and is a beacon for the future that all stakeholders should be proud of.”

Councillor Ian Nellins, Cabinet Member for Portfolio Climate Change, Natural Assets and The Green Economy added:

“As a rural county, we have a huge part to play in achieving net zero carbon emissions, and it’s important that we all work together to make it happen. Addressing the impact of climate change has been adopted as one of the council’s key operational principles. We’re working in partnership with many local businesses and communities to develop a wide range of carbon management projects and initiatives which will help us all reduce our contribution to the carbon footprint of the wider county, as well as ‘leading by example’ by improving our own performance.”

“We’re therefore delighted about the new teaching hub’s environmental credentials – it’s excellent to be part of a project that could help set the standard for future buildings and significantly contribute to our climate change ambitions.”

The new teaching hub is scheduled to be completed later in the Autumn term 2021.