A NEW multi-million pound super-campus that will be the first of its kind in the UK will begin to take shape from next month.
The £24.5million Habberley Learning Campus in Kidderminster, designed by Worcestershire County Council architects, will accommodate pupils from Wyre Forest Special School, Baxter College and St John's CE Primary School.
It will be one of the UK’s most significant low energy school project and its buildings are the most energy efficient ever designed by WCC, using about 75 per cent less energy than the national average.
Speller Metcalfe will build the new campus, which includes a new special school for 220 pupils, a new 13 lab science block, a shared Early Years hub, weekly residential accommodation for 16 pupils and improvements to St John’s CE Primary School.
Councillor John Campion, the council’s cabinet member with responsibility for transformation and commissioning, said: “We are delighted that this outstanding project is about to start on site.
“In addition to the benefits for the local community, this is a very significant project for the UK because of the exceptionally low energy requirements of the new buildings.
“The architects have designed the buildings to minimise the heating and cooling demand and to provide excellent indoor air quality. It’s a very impressive project and we're proud to be able to provide this for our communities.”
Councillor Liz Eyre, cabinet member responsible for children and families at WCC, said: “This is great news for pupils and families and means that Worcestershire will have its first fully integrated education facility that brings mainstream and special school pupils together to use the same facilities.
“The project will cater for pupils aged between two and 19. Although the facilities are mainly for the pupils of the schools on site, the all-weather sports pitch, hydrotherapy pool and sports hall will be available for use by the public.”
Adrian Speller, environmental manager for Speller Metcalfe, said: “We have worked collaboratively with Worcestershire County Council using the latest three dimensional BIM computer modelling software to achieve this very low energy design.
“We are also proud to be able to contribute to the local economy, as over 80 per cent of the materials and labour will be purchased from within Worcestershire."
The Habberley Learning Campus will be built in stages, starting in July with the special school, the science block and the boarding house, followed by the all-weather sports pitch and the hub. The work is set to be completed by Easter 2015.
The headteachers of the three schools have worked with the architects to develop the site, where facilities and learning opportunities will be shared by all three schools.