The Four Dwellings Primary School in Birmingham, built as part of the Government’s Building Schools for the Future programme, was designed by architects dRMM. It is constructed with a range of materials that not only express its prefabricated engineered timber construction but complement aesthetically and contribute to student comfort and superior teaching performance. For example, extensive use has been made of Troldtekt ceiling tiles in the study areas and library which need to be quiet, calm and healthy as well as all the classrooms, in the play areas and sports hall which is traditionally very noisy. The panels were chosen as they offer several benefits including high sound absorption, high durability, natural breathability, low cost life cycle performance and sustainability.
Designed from the inside out, the school focuses on the typical day of the student with a determination to extend learning both to internal informal learning zones as well as to the outdoors. Paired classrooms surround a central day-lit hall, forming an elliptical plan with clusters of four classrooms served by breakout spaces defined by furniture and display. Each cluster has its own localised landscape which extends the learning beyond the classroom walls.
The Danish manufactured Troldtekt tiles are made from 100% natural wood fibres mixed with cement. Available in various sizes and three grades from ultrafine to coarse, they can be left unpainted or painted in virtually any RAL colour. Troldtekt sustainability was recently recognised with certification at Silver level within the Cradle to Cradle concept. This international certification has been achieved because the panels do not contain hazardous substances and can be recycled.