Multi-million pound school upgrade set to start in the summer
PLANS to develop a 21st Century school for Morriston complete with an open atrium dining area and top-quality vocational facilities are set to take a step forward next week.
Work on the £22m upgrade of Morriston Comprehensive is due to start in the summer and the contract for the ambitious scheme could be awarded as early as next week.
The project, which will provide state-of-the-art school facilities within striking new energy-efficient buildings, will go before a special meeting of Swansea Council's Cabinet on June 18.
Cllr David Phillips, Leader of the Council, said: "The Morriston Comprehensive upgrade is a significant investment in our children's and our city's future.
"It's one of the major projects in the Council's drive to raise standards and improve educational environments in the city so pupils, no matter what their background, have the best possible start in life.
"The school currently exists in largely unsuitable, inefficient buildings. We want to provide inspirational teaching spaces which are space and energy-efficient to enable 21st Century learning."
Sandra Joy, Acting Head Teacher at the 1,100-pupil school, said pupils, students and staff were looking forward to seeing the new school take shape.
She said: "This scheme will give the young people of Morriston the opportunity to be educated in a first-class learning environment, allowing them to access a 21st Century curriculum and facilities which will enable them to reach their full potential.
"We are now very much looking forward to the start of the project. We will be working closely with the local authority and contractors to continue to provide quality education safely at the site throughout the work programme."
The Morriston project is funded by a £15.3 million grant from the Welsh Government with the remaining £6.5 million coming from Swansea Council.
The new school's striking design features will include a flexible space at the heart of the school featuring an inspiring entrance and landscaped courtyard.
There will be an open atrium in the dining hall and a functional main hall with retractable seating and audio visual facilities to make staging professional standard productions a possibility.
Teaching facilities will be grouped together to allow greater departmental interaction. There will be new facilities for hairdressing, construction, catering, drama and music.
Energy efficiency is built into the design, including solar panels, solar glazing and rainwater harvesting as well as flow controls on taps and sensors in classrooms to ensure lights are only on when rooms are occupied.
The new school will have a modern hard-wired and wireless IT infrastructure throughout.
Subject to Cabinet's agreement and planning arrangements, construction work is due to start at the school this summer with completion due in late 2014.
Building work will be planned in two phases to enable the school to remain open throughout the work.
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