Over the past few weeks and months I have been attending a wide variety of meetings linked to the proposed expansion of Park Hill. These meetings have ranged from working with architects and Governors to agree the look and feel of the new elements of the school, through to practical aspects about how the project will unfold.
A meeting took place on Monday where it was decided that the expansion works would take place in two phases. Phase one (which will start over February half term and last for three weeks) is to be the enabling works and will focus around:
- Creating a new car park on the left of the drive as you enter the turning for the school.
- Creating a compound in the current car park where the construction team (Wates) will be based.
- Removing trees and vegetation that will impinge on building works.
- Creating a new entrance via Park Hill Lane for Nursery parents to access the school.
Phase two will begin in March and see the main expansion work get underway. This work has a completion date of December 2014. On a regular basis I will write to you and post pictures on the blog www.ht1parkhill.wordpress.com to keep you informed of progress.
As you can imagine, with such a large project (over £1.4 million of investment) there will be changes to how we structure operational features of the school – these will include:
- Staggering playtimes (due to some of the middle playground being part of the compound).
- Relocating the Reception entrance due to the location of the construction compound. A separate letter will be sent out in the next two weeks to parents with detailed instructions of how and where collection and drop off will take place. Reception will share the outdoor area with Nursery for the duration of the project.
- All of KS1 will enter school through Miss Ling/Miss Garner’s entrance – again this is due to the location of the compound.
Wates construction team have carried out many expansion projects across Coventry schools and are experts in creating the minimum possible disruption to learning. All of their staff have police checks (DBS) and there will be a main site foreman who works closely with the school to ensure that learning across the school remains unaffected. Due to the nature of the project and the loss of our main car park until December 2014 there will be an increasing pressure on parking in and around the school premises. The school and Wates aim to manage this issue as sensitively as possible and I ask for your assistance in this matter. Throughout the life of the project we will have a range of construction vehicles on site – this will be carefully managed through a gateman whose sole focus is to ensure safe access and exit of the premises by any large vehicles. Wates have instructed all construction vehicles (where possible) that they are not to arrive for deliveries in our key drop off and collection times. Please can I ask that you bear in mind that whilst every effort will be made to ensure that this is the case, it will be important for parents to not park on the drive or obstruct the entrance to the school at any point of the day.
As part of Wates’ project management role of the school site they will be taking the following steps to ensure clear lines of communication with pupils, parents and the wider community through:
- Displaying the name and number of the site foreman on the school gates (he will directly handle any issues arising from the construction project). He will be your first port of call if there are any issues linked to the project.
- Holding school assemblies to keep the children updated on progress.
- Placing a post box on the school gates for questions or issues related to the new build.
Personally, I am very excited about the project and through us all working together, we can ensure that the school and the wider community have a building of which we are proud in December 2014.
Thank you for your ongoing support,