Contract awarded for Suffolk Framework SEN School Scheme

The vision of bringing primary and secondary students from the same school in Ipswich together on one campus has moved a step further today, with the announcement of the appointment of the main contractor.

ISG has been awarded the £4.7 million contract to carry out the construction of new state-of-the-art building on the existing secondary campus of Bridge School in Ipswich.

The Bridge School is currently housed on two sites, six miles apart, and caters for children aged three to 16 with special educational needs. When construction is completed in summer 2015, the new accommodation will allow the primary-aged children, who at the moment are based next door to Ipswich Hospital, to join the existing secondary school students at the site in Sprites Lane.

Since planning was agreed late in 2013, ISG has been working closely with Concertus Design & Property Consultants, to get the details around the final specification and cost agreed. Concertus has been involved right from the start, undertaking the feasibility study and carrying out the design. It will now move on to project manage the scheme on behalf of the client, Suffolk County Council.

Key design considerations for Concertus included accessibility, ergonomics, internal and external colour palettes and the provision of well designed external spaces. The building has also been designed to be highly efficient and will incorporate a biomass boiler and high performance building materials to mitigate its impact on the environment.

Over the next six weeks, ISG will be carrying out enabling works on-site erecting the perimeter fencing, installing the tree protection arrangements and setting up the site offices. Construction work will start in earnest in the middle of August.

Alan McCarthy-Wyper, Managing Director of ISG’s construction business, commented:

“The early engagement between key stakeholders has already sparked real innovation within the construction process. Also, bringing the combined experience of all project partners to the table from the very outset will undoubtedly result in the delivery of an excellent scheme tailored to the specific requirements of pupils and staff.”

The stand-alone, single-storey, cross laminated timber frame building, will provide 10 class spaces, office and specialist accommodation including an occupational therapy and physio gym, a library, soft play room and a new school hall. Externally, ISG will carry out a wide ranging landscaping scheme designed to provide for the specialist needs of the pupils.

ISG’s project is envisaged as phase one of a staged programme. Future phases will aim to provide improved shared accommodation and replacement facilities for the secondary-aged pupils.