Why Adaptive Modular Buildings are the way forward for Schools and Colleges

Why Adaptive Modular Buildings are the way forward for Schools and Colleges
By Martin Kellett – 01/06/13
Flexibility is the key ingredient… in adaptive educational building design.
Gone are the days when a ‘One Size Fits All’ mentality worked within the education sector.  Everyone recognises that, each school is different.  Each college, has its own specialities and both need to be responsive to the needs, trends and developments in teaching and their community.
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Holy Cross Primary Qube
60m2 – 2 Small Classrooms – Fulham
Modular buildings fit perfectly the requirements of modern day teaching.
They are built offsite to exacting quality standards, featuring energy efficient materials and with many Eco friendly components that are kinder to the environment.
As any educational services planner will tell you, the stress on physical floor space on inner city schools and colleges in the UK, is acute and it is becoming a leading pressure point.
Where the modular construction of a bespoke designed educational building really delivers a solution, is in the limited or restricted space environment.
Being able to utilise a space that has lost it’s potential with nearby developments, like the corner of a playground or a redundant area between two buildings or in a court yard, where access is almost impossible, The Qube have a solution.
Drop in place, crane over buildings solutions compliment the modular build process… perfectly!

Following the summer riots in 2011, the Greater London Authority needed to provide a facility which would be used for community regeneration.

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Project for GLA – Tottenham. Community Regeneration Facility Building.
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The building was opened by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, and local Tottenham football star Ledley King.
Moreover, creating an adaptive educational space, one that can function to a range of uses and services and that fulfils and exceeds all the day to day demands on the school or college but can also serve the local community, after the school day ends.
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Goldsworth Primary Qube 200m2 Double Classroom Block – Woking

Multi use, multi application buildings… designed to adapt and perform!

Flexibility and adaptive use is one of the key design features being persued by educational building planners.  But buildings should be able to adapt from just mere learning areas to also be FUN SPACES!
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Holy Cross Primary Qube

60m2 – 2 Small Classrooms – Fulham
One specialist educational building supplier that is creating a real buzz in this sector is, The Qube.
The Qube is one of the UK’s leading manufacturers and specialist suppliers of educational buildings using SIPs or Structurally Insulated Panels.
SIPs provide a high engergy efficient, robust and rapid build construction, that can turn out a fully featured and specified educational structure in a matter of days or a few weeks, where, a conventional building, can take many months.
The logistical saving on space, time and resources to construct one of these robust buildings, is significant.
The building or buildings can be prefabricated in an environmentally controlled factory facility, where the vast majority of the building fabric, features and utilities can be pre installed before arrival to site.
Does Size Matter?
Not at The Qube!
A Cute Smaller Qube Structure
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The Qube offer and have supplied many large scale structures of up to 3 storey buildings, through to smaller single unit buildings. Fully serviced, complete with singular or multiple WC and shower block facilities to work alongside classrooms and sports halls, in conventional formats and in pre fabricated Pod environments.
The pre fabricated Shower or WC or Shower and WC pod, is fully housed within a full wet room, purpose built and encapsulated within a pod structure.
Other design features can include specialist full or compact kitchen, food production and servery areas.  The Qube have even supplied a school cafe facility.
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With a range of adaptive buildings from school shops, staff rest rooms and creative spaces where pupils and staff can interact with nature and the outdoors, from within the classroom space.
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Adaptive design features include cleverly designed hide away storage, multifunction work areas and  specialist natural source lighting, with roof light amplification tubes that capture and maximise any natural light source. In the image below what appear to be electric lights, are in fact light tubes, drawing in natural day light!
The modern teaching environment should be comfortable and fully controllable, creating a space in which teaching and learning take centre stage. The Qube is a full environmentally controlled teaching space with instant warm air and cooling systems that are timer and remote controlled with optional, full air conditioning.
Any building can encompass special acoustic qualities, which may be required for any musical, video or TV production facilities.  Acoustic walls, ceilings, window and door glazings and even noise reduction screening.
The best judge of a successful teaching space… are pupils, students and teaching staff, after all, these are the optimum users of these buildings.
The Qube design team consulted these users when considering all the key features and services, in the design of their range of school and college buildings. Only by understanding the users needs, aspirations and issues, could the design team consider and design a step by step solution, to meet their exacting needs.
If you would like to see what real teachers and pupils have to say about their Qube school building click here
As the educational planners grapple with the conundrum of how to extract maximum efficiency out of limited or reducing resources, many educational organisations, planners and government departments are beginning to explore how good design can not only overcome many of these issues but also enhance the learning process.  In a recent article feature headed by The Guardian, leading educators debated…
School design: how important are buildings to learning?
For more on this subject, click here
If you are a school planner, governor, bursar or an educational resources team who are faced with the challenge of supplying educational buildings within the remit of a robust, adaptive, on time and on budget school buildings project, The Qube technical and design teams fully understand your requirement and help implement a solution.
For more information about The Qube and Qube Structures, please visit :

The Qube is the UK's leading manufacturer and supplier of modular and bespoke designed Educational, Healthcare and Commercial buildings, built using SIPs panels for robust, super heat efficient and rapid construction. With hundreds of satisfied clients from the educational, healthcare, retail and domestic sectors. The Qube design stunning, modern contemporary buildings that fit in to place for both commercial and domestic applications. The Qube - what will yours be? www.theqube.co.uk

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