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O'Hare & McGovern

St Joseph’s Primary School

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Project Info

  • Project Category:
    Primary
  • Project Name:
    St Joseph’s Primary School
  • Client:
    Belfast Education Services
  • Location:
    8 Knockbraken Drive, Saintfield Road, Carryduff, Belfast, BT8 8EX, N.I.

Project Overview

St. Joseph’s Primary School is a single and two storey 2700m² building.

The Design, Build, Operation and Maintenance of the 15 classroom primary was part of a PPP framework contract.

The new co-education primary school with Nursery Unit was constructed as the first phase and extensive external works and sports facilities on the second phase. The build comprises of traditional strip foundations with block/brick cavity walls and insitu concrete first floor with timber trussed roof. A small section of the school consists of a structural steel frame.

The welcoming nature of the school is reflected in the way the curved plan building creates a new unique sense of identity to St. Joseph’s Primary School. The link to the original church on the site is retained by incorporating the main stain glass windows in prominent locations on the elevations.

The central point of the building is a two storey height reception space and multi-purpose hall with curved blocks of two storey teaching accommodation positioned in clusters from this central point. 

The classrooms are arranged in clusters of four and one of three around a common resource area. Horizontal circulation is reduced to a minimum and by carefully locating the vertical circulation pupils do not pass through another classroom cluster to access the communal facilities such as the hall or dining room.

Hard play spaces have been provided following the natural terraces of the site. There is clear segregation between the different Key Stage playgrounds with a more formal shaped playground providing the opportunity for structured ball games. A garden area is provided beside the Key Stage 1 playground as a teaching aid.

A welcoming Staff/Parents Room features a two way viewing panel through which parents may observe their children at play. A beautifully apportioned ‘Quiet Room’ provides an ideal environment for the development of language and thinking skills.

The many level changes in the site have been taken advantage off to enhance the overall site design. Hard play areas are stepped down the site with ramped access provided to all areas.

Works included the removal and relocation of existing mobile classrooms with demolitions of the existing school and church. The new building was built on the grounds of the existing school.

Vehicular access was carefully designed with a bus turning circle and generous drop off areas.

The project achieved a Very Good BREEAM rating with specific credits for sustainable design and for implementation of our environmental procedures during the construction stage.

Key Features

  • Very Good BREEAM rating (specific credits for sustainable design & for implementation of our environmental procedures during the construction stage)
  • Public Private Partnership (PPP) Framework Procurement; Bespoke form of contract based on JCT 2002
  • PFI (Private Funding Initiative)
  • Accommodates 472 students with 15 classrooms & a Nursery unit for 52 children
  • Live site occupied school; adjacent to Church, residential area & local businesses
  • Sloping restricted site
  • Demolitions; removal & relocation of existing mobile classrooms & demolitions of existing School & Church
  • Facilities includes; school hall, designated dining area, library/computer suite & a wide range of additional accommodation for peripatetic tuition, a specially designed outdoor classroom, an ecological garden area & secure hard play areas with a covered play area to ensure that outdoor play can continue in all weathers
  • Special Education Department
  • Bus turning area with drop off areas & car parking facilities 

LOCATION