Ainsley Gommon Architects

Client

Gwynedd Council

Location

Bangor

Value

£7.8 million

Date Completed

Planning Achieved Winter 2018

Development Overview

Ysgol Y Garnedd is a new £7.8 million primary school in Bangor forming part of Gwynedd Council’s 21st Century Schools Programme. The new school will accommodate children from the Penrhosgarnedd, Tal-y-bont and Llandygai catchment areas and is located on a site adjacent to the existing Ysgol Y Garnedd school building, which is currently severely oversubscribed. Once construction of the new building is completed, the existing school buildings will be demolished to make way for an additional car park and sports fields for the new school.

The new 420 place school has been designed as a modern, well-equipped facility providing fourteen classrooms, two ALN classrooms, a nursery, a Cylch Meithrin and a large hall, along with a number of other different teaching spaces, staff and administration areas. The form of the building has been designed to group together the classrooms for each Key Stage whilst creating a safe play environment at the heart of the school. A central courtyard creates a safe space to play for the younger years of the school whilst the older pupils have a larger space to the north, and both areas benefit from passive supervision.

Whilst being contemporary in design, the building has been designed to sit comfortably within its semi-rural landscape. Materials have been chosen through careful study of the locale and a consideration for buildability, and used to articulate the function of the building. Local stone forms some elements of the façade and boundary walls providing a grounding in terms of its geological context and an architectural similarity to the buildings of the area. Metal coated composite panels break up the mass of the building and articulate elements such as windows and separating floors.

A two-stage tender process allowed Early Contractor Involvement with Read Construction informing the design and technical development, helping to minimise risk moving forward.

The BREEAM Excellent school received Planning Consent in December 2018 and is due to start on site in Spring 2019.