Civic Trust Awards commendation

Couch Perry & Wilkes, one of the UK’s largest dedicated environmental building services consultancies has celebrated with architects, Nicholas Hare and the wider team in receiving a ‘Commendation’ in the Civic Trust Awards 2010.  Nicholas Hare nominated the new Joseph Chamberlain Sixth Form College in Birmingham.

Couch Perry & Wilkes was responsible for the mechanical and electrical design and implementation, a contract worth £7 million.  The £28 million project involved relocating the existing college buildings onto a brown field site and building a new innovative, environmentally sound building of approximately 12,000m2.  The project was completed on time, within budget in just 18 months.

The Civic Trust Awards is one of the oldest, most respected build environment award schemes in Europe. From cafes and churches to housing and hospitals, the Civic Trust Awards have rewarded over 5,600 buildings which have made a difference to local people and their communities by providing the design and facilities which have made better places for people.

Joseph Chamberlain Sixth Form College (JCC) is a flexible new-build college, on a prominent inner-city site next to a busy roundabout. The buildings surround courtyards, giving calm, protected spaces, and offering a rich learning environment where natural light is maximised throughout. The new three storey buildings provide a range of academic teaching facilities from Arts, Sciences, IT, through to catering and restaurant areas, and workshop facilities.  Adjacent to the new buildings there is a Sports Hall Centre that will be used by students and the local community.

Richard Swannick, Senior Director at Couch Perry & Wilkes said, “The team is delighted to receive this commendation for Joseph Chamberlain Sixth Form College.  The city centre location adjacent to the ring road meant there was literally no scope for natural ventilation due to noise and air quality issues.  Despite this constraint, Couch Perry & Wilkes was able to achieve a ‘very good’ BREEAM rating which was important for LSC funding, though no formal BREEAM assessment was carried out.  However a formal EPC rating of ‘B’ was attained.”

The Joseph Chamberlain Sixth Form College was also a winner in the RIBA/LSC – Further Education Design Excellence Award 2009, and also won the British Construction Industry Awards – The Prime Minister’s Better Public Building Award 2009.

Project team consisted of: Nicholas Hare Architects LLP, Bam Construction, Couch Perry & Wilkes (M&E, BREEAM), Maddison (QS), BDP Engineering (Structural Engineers), and Camlin Lonsdale (Landscape Designers).