A drawing of the proposed development can be seen here:
SGA has sent in the following comments:
We wish the scheme to go ahead successfully replacing the existing outdated school facility however it is important that the replacement is designed with future needs in mind considering that it will be there for possibly 60 years. It is worth considering this building as an important piece of townscape which could enrich the sequenced approach to Southgate Green and set an example to school children of the future .It should be a place of learning that they would enjoy visiting and remembering.
We would have expected the applicant to carefully consider the environmental sustainability of a school and are disappointed to see that a sustainable solution has not been considered. Green roofs, walls, suds drainage, solar panels ,ground source heat pumps etc.
The Council as client appears to be setting a low design bar and the application submitted is a pallid attempt and provides an unsatisfactory replacement. The site is at the core of Southgate Green within the conservation area .The building needs to contribute to the streetscape and to compliment the views towards The Green and Christchurch.
We are not convinced that the scheme submitted is the only possible approach .
The study group considers that alternative approaches could be considered for example to make the box like mass appear to be a number of smaller vertical units or to allow the box mass to be undisguised without being out of place but fitting in.
Taking each in turn the applicant might look to explore articulation of the facade at first and second floor ,around windows and openings. having different planes would help eg, brick bays brought forward or recessed. Exploration of relief in the facades with windows forming part of a relief composition.
Windows could be projected in bay format perhaps using colour as a flag, they could be suitably detailed (reveals especially) to a standard befitting a conservation area.
The first floor could perhaps be expressed as special ,perhaps a different brick pattern ,banding or colour contrast, there are many examples of contemporary brickwork design which could be referred to expressing a sense of individuality and place.
A simple well proportioned façade with modestly and varying and receding planes in different colours giving an overall pattern pleasing to the eye could be explored.
In short not good enough at present
Any comments should be made ASAP at: