I recently got to visit Ayelesbury Academy which opened in the Spring of 2013. I worked on this project with Allies and Morrison Architects for 16-months from the initial concepts until on-site construction. It was very exciting to see the project complete and occupied.
The entrance and administration area were developed to create a single entry node for the school. The school was designed with a metal clad entrance pavilion with the name proudly cut into it to provide a strong new identity to the community. The school is currently being used by Sacred Heart Academy as a swing school while their school is being rebuilt. The final sign piece will be added when the new academy takes control of the school. The bright green, chosen based off a pair of shoes purchased at the time, gives a sharp contrast to the brick of the existing building and is used as accents throughout the external facade.
Addressing concerns from Southwark Council over how our project becomes integrated with the existing urban fabric of terraced houses, the elevation of Dawes Street was developed to create a transition from the 3 directly adjacent houses with the school. The end piece of the school was geometrically developed to answer the Victorian houses in proportion of fenestration, scale and orientation before the primary structure of the school’s presence of the street began.
Playing with ideas of both surveillance and voyeurism, the teacher’s lounge was placed at the corner of the new building, directly above the outside zones of activity. A large bay window is then extruded out of the structure to give prominence to the program behind as an effort to thwart potential discipline problems.
The sports gym is build of a brick base with timber facade above. The timber continues past the main sports hall to conceal the conditioning systems.