Orchard Primary School, Hackney

Project: Orchard Primary School, Hackney

Orchard Primary School in Hackney has embarked on an ambitious project – part refurb, part new build – having been awarded £6m by the Primary Capital Programme. The project includes the complete refurbishment of the 3-storey building and an extension which has been designed by architects at Rivington Street Studio and incorporates both lighting control and luminaires from RIDI
To achieve the state funded Primary Capital, Orchard’s build needed to comply with a ‘Very Good’ rating from BREEAM. This was realised throughout with 10% of the buildings energy consumption coming from renewable sources. Contributing to the impressive energy consumption levels is a system of RIDI luminaires and lighting controls which service both the existing and newly created classrooms.
“The ambitious vision on this project required stringent planning to achieve the sustainability and energy efficiency goals set out by the architects,” says Dale Price, Project Engineer at Michael Jones Engineering Consultants. “We favoured a design from RIDI Lighting as it has a proven track record in delivering the credits required for the Health and Wellbeing criteria of a BREEAM accredited school.”
RIDI’s F-Line luminaires were installed in coupled rows to the classrooms as the slim styling provides the option for a variety of light distributions and can be either surface-mounted or, crucially, suspended. At Orchard, the indirect light and option for suspension allowed the lighting system to integrate with suspended acoustic panels, ensuring a suitable working environment for the pupils.
F-Line’s shallow depth was critical in meeting the architectural requirement for the lighting to not be significantly deeper than the suspended panels, which were mounted at the same height between the luminaires. The suspension facility was further exploited when designers had to observe the beams and additional obstructions that were present in the classrooms of the existing 1930s structure.
“To maximise efficiency and minimise consumption, we were able to integrate sensors on to the network of F-Line fittings,” said Dale. “Having fitted the sensors, daylight linking and absence/presence detection offer energy savings on a room-by-room basis. When you combine these savings across the whole site, the savings to both energy and finance are significant.”
A key point of the BREEAM guidelines is the emphasis on maintained illuminance levels. A RIDI DALI control system was utilised here to offer intuitive dimming controls for rooms with increased exposure to natural light. Optimising occupant control of lighting is also a key factor for BREEAM schools and via the DALI controls, teachers can effectively manage lighting pre-sets and switch scenes for presentations, projector use or to manually adapt the lighting levels as needed.
Minimising its burden upon energy and expense is a crucial tenet of the modern lighting solution but as important, especially in schools, is the necessity for lighting to be part of an environment conducive to comfort, thus improving concentration. In the today’s classroom, lighting also needs to be aware of visual health risks, given the ubiquity of interactive whiteboards, displays and multimedia in addition to traditional desk work which all require varying levels and direction of light.
RIDI’s range of Dali controls, coupled with an extensive catalogue of fittings, is able to cater for the complete range of requirements for lighting schools and is also adept at fulfilling the exacting demands of ambitious architectural design and the government approved BREEAM scheme.
From the F-Line luminaires to the lighting controls, RIDI was able to offer the architects at Rivington Street Studio the complete service at Orchard School and has a proven track record in a variety of educational settings from ultra-efficient LED emergency lighting to high-spec, impact resistant luminaires for sports halls and gymnasiums.