UK’s Turner & Townsend helps Australia build high-rise schools

To cram more classroom space into its rapidly growing cities, Australia has embraced high-rise – or "vertical" – school designs, and UK’s Turner & Townsend (T&T) is getting in on the act.

Yesterday the construction consultant announced its third contract win on high-rise schools in 18 months, which together represent $143.6m in total construction spending.

The latest scheme, in Melbourne, "strengthened our position as Australia’s leading provider of professional services in high-rise school construction", the company said.

T&T is also working on high-rise schools in Adeleide and Parramatta, Sydney (pictured).

In Melbourne, T&T has been hired by the Victorian School Building Authority to provide project management for a $32m (AUS$43m) vertical high school in Richmond.

A year ago the Victorian School Building Authority appointed architect Hayball to design the new high school for this rapidly densifying inner-city suburb.

Hayball said Richmond is growing by almost 3,000 people per year and "has one of the highest densities in Melbourne (50 people per square metre)".

The school will be located across two sites, one comprising a 7,000-sq-m administration and classroom building, the other featuring sporting and recreational facilities, including a competition grade indoor gymnasium.

T&T is also project managing a vertical school in Adelaide and providing cost management and advisory services for one in Parramatta, Sydney.

Company director Robin Sweasey said the high-rise approach is new to high schools, but can be the way forward.

"The benefits are extensive and include being located close to excellent transport networks," he said.

"Greater density of student numbers within integrated facilities turbo charges the education environment and creates a vibrant learning mix that enhances the student experience."

Image: Render of the planned 17-storey school for 3,000 primary and secondary pupils in Parramatta, Sydney, designed by BVN in association with Grimshaw (BVN)

Story for GCR? Get in touch via email: [email protected]

Latest articles in News