Broadwater Farm Inclusive Learning Campus is a £14m project in Tottenham to amalgamate three schools into a single 6000m2 campus building. The previous schools consisted of a mainstream primary school and two all-age SEN schools, one catering for students on the autistic spectrum and the other for students with profound and multiple learning difficulties. The building was developed on the site of the existing school buildings and the new two–storey building was programmed into three phases to allow the existing schools to remain open during the construction period.
At the time Building Bulletin 93 did not include any specific criteria for ASD students but interviews with staff and families from other ASD schools suggested that children on the autistic spectrum had specific acoustic requirements which were not being met by the mainstream design standards. We therefore developed a set of bespoke criteria for the project to meet the specific needs of the students. In general terms these criteria required SEN classrooms to have lower ambient noise levels and shorter reverberaton times to minimise the distraction in the classrooms.
The building was constructed with steel frames and in-situ cast concrete floors. The thermal strategy of the building included large areas of exposed concrete soffits which presented problems with meeting the more stringent reverberation time criteria without the use of suspended grid ceilings. The solution was to install suspended raft absorbers below the concrete soffit and acoustically absorbent panels on the walls. These panels are not inherently robust so were installed at high level to avoid damage.
Client : Haringey Children’s Services
Contractors : Mulalley and Company Ltd
Architects : Gollifer Langston
Project Value : £14 million