Our engineers and consultants provided structural, infrastructure, building services and geotechnical engineering for Bournville College's new campus complex on the former car plant site at Longbridge in Birmingham. It's a flagship project that forms a key part of the redevelopment of the area, governed by the Longbridge Area Action Plan.
Bournville College — home of further education, higher education and vocational teaching — is now accommodated in a central concrete frame spine building housing teaching spaces, accompanied by anxillary structures such as a conference centre, a learning resource centre, and restaurants. The spine building provides a dramatic skyline for travellers along the nearby A38 arterial road.
The main building rises to six storeys high and features post-tensioned concrete slabs. It is founded on bored cast in situ piles, and is over 180m long. It straddles the Longbridge Seismic Fault. Large glazed areas of the façade are used to promote the building's functions and performance.
Public facilities, such as restaurants, motor vehicle workshops, hair salons and the conference centre are a bridge between the vocational teaching aspects of the college and the public, and are used to establish a connection between the public and learning environments.
The business and conference centre is a long span steel frame structure, with column-free internal spaces. The learning resource centre uses a series of glulam timber 'goal post' structures, spanning approximately 20m each, to signal its presence.
The design of the project was developed using a single computer model, an important tool for communicating ideas between the whole team, integrating analysis and producing comprehensive coordinated design information. It also promoted greater accuracy and efficiency, and clearer communication.