Completed in July 2004 for Cheshire County Council, Kingsmead was the practice’s first primary school commission, which has since become a model for environmental school design in other parts of the UK.
Created as an exemplar of sustainable design and construction, from its orientation on site, to the selection of natural materials, use of natural ventilation and daylight, and renewable heating.
The visible timber structure creates a strong practical and symbolic aesthetic inside and out, and allows pupils contact with this natural material. Winter gardens create pleasant spaces for study or rest. Every classroom has uninterrupted views of green space. Rainwater is harvested for toilet flushing.
The use of timber glulam beams has enabled continuous structural members to extend from exterior to interior without the need for a thermal break. High thermal insulation in roof and walls, photovoltaics, solar hot water panels,a biomass boiler and an automated natural ventilation system combine to reduce energy consumption to 40-60% below that of conventional new buildings – enough to pay for an extra teacher every year.
Source: Supplied to wood for good by BRE in a pdf of case studies.