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Lea Manor High School, Luton, UK  

The School represents a remodel and refurbish project which provides little scope for influencing its shape, therefore the new elements have been designed to complement and enhance the existing building form. All materials have been selected for their appropriateness for the space, durability, low maintenance and lifecycle costs.

The approach was to integrate sustainability proposals throughout the design. The BREEAM assessment method has been adopted aiming to achieve a minimum rating of ‘Very Good’. One of the key elements to this development is the extensive use of existing building elements, which reduces the impact of embodied energy. Sub- metering systems has been specified with the Mechanical and Electrical services installation incorporating water, heat, and electricity, oil and gas meters as appropriate. Control and monitoring of the building services systems is via a fully integrated Building Energy Management Control System with controls set to effect maximum fuel economy and plant efficiency. Zone control is provided for areas that are used outside normal working hours. Ventilation and cooling of the school building is by means of a predominantly passive system. All lighting is provided with energy efficient high frequency control gear, controlled via presence detectors with daylight linking provided to perimeter luminaries adjacent windows. The result of these strategies brings the building up to current high standards of energy efficiency and significantly reduces the buildings carbon footprint and energy bills.

The Lea Manor High School design embraces the use of strong colour to provide animation and interest to the building, whilst also clearly identifying different elements. Each of the different extended services elements of the building are highlighted using strong colours. The use of such colours lift what is at present an uninspiring elevation and signposts to the community the activities and their location on site. The use of colour continues into the building with key areas being developed in colour to add interest and vitality.

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