Atkins’ £3.5m project aims to maximise use of outdoor space

Inspired by a fisherman’s haven, Atkins’ design for the £3.5m Newcomen Primary school in Redcar, Cleveland maximises the innovative use of outdoor space, enabling pupils to learn about their environment. The build project was completed in September of this year, and has now opened its doors to pupils.

Atkins has created a large and innovative space for the school, in which pupils of Newcomen Primary can explore creative, as well as academic fields of learning.

The project, which has been built on the small site of the original fifties school, has maximised room for learning in the face of tight restrictions on space and budget. To achieve this without incurring extensive costs, Atkins, in partnership with contractor, Carillion, constructed four outdoor “break-out” areas in the space between the classrooms, which join onto to the main buildings and serve as out-door learning areas.

The “break-outs”, some of which contain plots of soil, encourage children to take part in environment projects, bringing outside into the classroom and allowing pupils space for creative play. The addition of this space is equivalent to six extra classrooms, providing the school with an invaluable flexible learning resource and a sustainable solution should they wish to expand the building in the future.