Northcote Intermediate

Northcote Intermediate

Pacific Environments were originally engaged by the Ministry of Education to put an eight-classroom block on site.  The constrained nature of the existing site led to a master planning exercise with the Ministry of Education to properly look at the long-term development on the site. The outcome from this suggested that the first building that should be developed was a twelve-classroom block with adjacent car park behind.

The staff and students were engaged in the project from an early stage they were invited to participate in design workshops which ultimately inspired the design.  The Educational Brief from the school was discussed at these sessions and hands-on designs were done by all involved.  At each stage of the process the designs were shared with the community and feedback taken on board.

The use of pre-cast exterior panels allowed the design team a further opportunity to involve the school, community, and Iwi with the project’s distinctive waharoa panel patterns being designed by a local graphic designer Aaron Hall.

The building’s design follows the Ministry of Education design guidelines and offers a variety of flexible learning spaces to accommodate a range of students’ learning styles.

Robust structure and building materials were incorporated into the building for longevity and ease of maintenance. Additionally, the structure was designed to accommodate internal layout changes should this be needed in the future.  Functionally the building is naturally ventilated, with high levels of glazing for natural light, and large openings to allow connected outdoor learning.  Sun control to the Eastern and Western windows has been handles by fixed vertical louvres to these two aspects.

Despite challenging ground conditions and construction process being affected by Covid lockdowns the building was completed and occupied by the students in November 2023.

The design team was pleased to receive positive feedback from the community and the school at the opening ceremony.

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