February 9, 2023

NSC Magazine Article: Top Marks for Steel

We are elated to see our work showcased in the latest NSC Magazine’s “Projects and Features” section for our work at London Academy Highgate Hill. To read the full article please follow this link https://www.newsteelconstruction.com/wp/top-marks-for-steel-2/.

“Some flexibility has been designed into the building as the main hall and dining area can used as one large space, or separated via a folding partition,” says AKSWard Senior Engineer Freya Berkin.

“To create a seamless link between the two areas, without any columns, a storey-high truss, positioned at first floor level, supports columns at second and third floor.”

The 16.6m-long × 4.2m-deep truss was too deep to be maneuvered into the site, and so it had to be delivered in nine pieces. It was then assembled on the ground before being installed by the 100t-capacity crane.

Wrapped around the double-height main hall, and taking into account that half of the area above the dining room is an outdoor plant deck, the first floor has a smaller footprint than the ground floor. First floor accommodates two classrooms, a staff room, IT hub, storage areas and a double-height drama studio.

The majority of the steel frame for the upper floors is based around a 7.6m × 7.8m column grid pattern, but as the drama studio is slightly larger, its roof – at third floor level – is formed with a couple of Westok beams that act as transfer structures by supporting columns that are only present on the uppermost level.

The second and third floors have six and seven rooms respectively. The former has access to an outdoor terrace positioned above part of the main hall, while the latter will be used mainly by the sixth form.

The new school building is due to be ready for teachers and pupils in time for the 2023 Autumn term.