Located off the busy high street of Stockwell in South London, sits the recently expanded Stockwell Primary School. Funded by the Government and administered by Lambeth Council, the educational facility underwent a £3.3million expansion to introduce nine new classrooms and a nursery – allowing for an extra class of students to be added to each year group at a time when school places are increasingly under pressure.
Although some parts of the school were demolished to make way for the modern expansion, the existing Victorian building – built in 1884 – remained, creating a dynamic visual harmony through the contrast of old and new architectural styles.
While the school has been expanded several times over the last few decades, the most recent extension had an added agenda. This included equipping the new learning spaces with state-of-the-art heating and ventilation systems to help the school reach a BREEAM ‘Very Good’ standard, and technology to improve the Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) in the classrooms.
Research has proved that too much CO² in the classroom air affects pupil performance, lowers attainment and can lead to complaints such as headaches, drowsiness, lack of concentration and a heightened sense of discomfort. In addition, high humidity mixed with a lack of effective ventilation can result in condensation – an ideal breeding ground for mildew and dust mites which contribute to the incidence of respiratory illnesses such as asthma.
Simply opening windows would not give the control of air quality that is necessary, represents a security risk, would introduce noise and pollution from the busy street outside into the school, so the designers needed a system that would manage air quality effectively and provide responsive, energy efficient heating and ventilation.
Jaga worked closely with the architects to come up with a novel way of introducing air into a Jaga heating and ventilating system. Due to the external façade of the building traditional circular grilles would have looked out of place, so Jaga suggested an innovative solution that involved the provision of discreet “groove” along the façade of the building so the air can enter the building.
Then, equipped with Jaga’s Low-H₂O technology, twelve Strada Oxygen Refresh radiators were installed throughout the six new classrooms, which see fresh air extracted from outside through the “groove” in the wall and being drawn across the heat exchanger inside the Strada radiator. The advanced intelligence of the system also automatically regulates the air intake to manage the CO2 in each classroom.
As the school is considered ‘inner city,’ Jaga also had to work very closely with an Acoustic Specialist to ensure that the acoustic properties of the Oxygen system would keep traffic noise from entering through the air inlets.
The school also features full height glazing, which presents another heating challenge. It therefore was crucial to find a heating system that could combat the inevitable heat loss through the glass, and would warm the corridors that lead to the classrooms and other areas efficiently.
Jaga proposed their Mini Freestanding as the ideal solution to provide perimeter heating against the glazed facades. Purpose-designed to sit unobtrusively beneath large glass facades, the Mini Freestanding radiator entrains cold air from both the space and the glazed facade and provides heat in both directions. This results in effectively heating the space, while preventing heat loss through the glass. This also means the Mini Freestanding eliminates condensation build up, which glazed facades are extremely vulnerable to.
Based on Jaga’s Low-H₂O technology to reduce energy consumption while maintaining or even increasing heat output, a total of 16 Mini Freestanding radiators, were installed along the corridors of both levels one and two. With a scratch-resistant finish and fitted with narrow grilles to discourage small fingers or other items being pushed into the unit, the robust Mini Freestanding is clearly ideal suited to a situation where young children can access the radiator.