Construction work completed on net-zero school

  • 25th June 2024

The new three-storey building is named after former Manchester University chancellor, Lemn Sissay (pictured)

Tilbury Douglas has completed the first phase of construction work on the new Kingsway Park High School, a net zero carbon in operation (NZCiO) secondary school in Rochdale, Greater Manchester.

The team celebrated the handover of the new building with a naming ceremony, marking the successful partnership between Tilbury Douglas, Altus Education Partnership, and the Department for Education (DfE).

The new three-storey building, named after former Manchester University chancellor, Lemn Sissay, was constructed using cloud-based collaborative technology and lean construction methods, including an offsite-manufactured ‘kit of parts’.

The school’s NZCiO design embeds efficient, all-electric, low-energy building fabric, using photovoltaic panels that balance electricity use with low embodied carbon materials and biodiversity.

Facilities include practical teaching classrooms for design technology and reprographics, food technology, science laboratories, and staff rooms.

1,400 pupils moved into the new building as Tilbury Douglas continues with phase two, carefully demolishing the existing Laingspan building to minimise educational disruption during the exam period.

Additionally, hard-paved and grassy social areas will be sheltered with newly-installed canopies featuring photovoltaic panels.

The project has achieved an impressive social value return on investment of over £7m, which includes more than £1,000 of donations in kind for the Trussell Trust Food Bank, 98% local spend, 626 weeks of apprentice training, and an innovative partnership with DKMS charity on site to recruit blood stem cell donors in the fight against blood cancers.

Martin Horne, regional director for the North West at Tilbury Douglas, said: “The ceremony marks a significant milestone as this building stands as a testament to the hard work, dedication, and collaboration of everyone involved.”

Phil Shaw, managing director building (North), added: “The Tilbury Douglas team effectively guided the DfE through a collaborative and well-informed engagement process, presenting clear and actionable options to achieve net zero in school operations.

“This successful experience will be invaluable as we partner with the DfE to deliver eight more low-carbon schools in the North West, ensuring a sustainable future for education.”

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