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Work to start on new boarding house at prestigious international school
23rd May 2016

​Construction work is set to begin on a new boarding house that has been designed by Broadway Malyan and will use the latest modular technology.

The 113-bed development at ACS Cobham International School will see the construction of a four-storey accommodation block that will include student accommodation, supervisor accommodation, study areas and common rooms. It has been designed to complement the existing buildings on the 128-acre campus.

The scheme is one of a range of collaborations between the prestigious education group and the practice which include architectural design and masterplanning projects at other campuses including Hillingdon and Egham. The boarding house project will be a mix of traditional and modular construction, which lead architect Steve Hance from Broadway Malyan’s Reading studio said offered significant advantages in ensuring the development met the needs of the school.

He said: “The school sits within the Green Belt so height was a significant issue. The modular construction method reduces void space and allows the building to be lower while still providing the necessary accommodation on the site.

“The modular approach also provides a consistent build quality with self-supporting steel units prefabricated in a factory rather than on site and this has the advantage of significantly reducing the build time so the facility will be completed in time for the start of the 2017 academic year.

“The building itself consists of two wings with a central plaza to meet the needs of the school which accommodates both boys and girls. Balconies at each end of the building come to a tapered point, creating a dynamic bookend to the building.

“The exterior of the building has a minimal palette of materials informed by the existing buildings on the campus with a combination of a zinc cladding that matches the roof of the nearby dining hall and a high quality European brick.”

“Boarding at ACS Cobham focuses on providing a ‘home away from home’ and retaining a family-style atmosphere. Our new facilities will include bright airy rooms, state of the art facilities and social hubs.”
Mark Venn-Dunn, Head of Boarding, ACS Cobham

The development also has a strong sustainable focus with a SUD system, Combined Heat and Power generation (CHP) and a rainwater harvesting system. Broadway Malyan are working with Caledonian who have been appointed as the main design and build contractor. They will also be responsible for the manufacture and construction of the modular components of the building. ACS International is a highly successful chain of international schools based in the UK and Middle East, providing international and US curriculum education to children aged four to 18.

Mark Venn-Dunn, Head of Boarding at ACS Cobham, added: “Boarding at ACS Cobham focuses on providing a ‘home away from home’ and retaining a family-style atmosphere. Our new facilities will include bright airy rooms, state of the art facilities and social hubs.

“Students will have dedicated spaces for recreation, watching the latest movies or music on large screens, preparing and eating meals in large groups, quiet relaxation, contemplation and studying.

“This is an exciting development which we are proud of and look forward to welcoming and sharing with the boarding and school community.”

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