New £21million school campus for Glasgow

By Catriona Stewart

New £21million school campus for Glasgow

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THESE are the first images of Glasgow’s new £21million school campus.

Councillors are expected to approve a building contract for the new Gowanbank Campus this week – making it the first new build under the ambitious 4Rs strategy.

It will bring together two primary schools, a language and communication resource (LCR) and a nursery built as part of Glasgow City Council’s five-year pledge to improve its education estate.

Gowanbank and Howford primary schools will relocate to the new campus on the site of the former Levern primary school with St Vincent’s language and communication resource.

There will also be a nursery on the site, Craigbank Nursery, with extended day, 52 weeks a year provision for pre-school pupils.

Councillor Stephen Curran, executive member for education and young people, said: “The new school campus at Gowanbank will be wonderful and I’m delighted that we are starting to build new schools again.

“We are now in the third year of our ambitious commitment to replace or refurbish every primary school and nursery in the city at a cost of £250m and providing first-class learning environments for children.”

Gowanbank Campus is the first new-build primary school project to commence under the 4Rs Education Estates new-build programme of works.

The new super-campus will feature 11 spaces for Gowanbank Primary and seven for St Vincent’s LCR with 12 for Howford Primary.

Craigbank Nursery will have two classrooms for children aged three to five years and one toddlers classroom for pupils aged two to three.

The education facilities will also share resources across the campus, including the assembly room, gym hall, libraries, meeting spaces and a drama room.

Gowanbank is the first of four new campus builds for the city, including St Brendan’s/Garscadden/Yoker Campus, Sighthill Campus, and the Glendale Primary Campus.

In addition to the new campuses, Glasgow City Council is also building new stand-alone nursery schools and extensions to existing schools.

Some works under way have been part-funded by Scottish Future Trust money but Gowanbank is the first new build paid for entirely by the council.

It is expected the new campus will be ready to open to pupils in June 2017.

This is now year three of the council’s five-year 4Rs Estate Strategy, which aims to improve the fabric all primary schools and nurseries in the city.

In 2012, the Evening Times told of a council pledge to rebuild or refurbish every city primary, making a promise to spend £255m on the 4Rs strategy.

This came on top of £550m spent between 2000 and 2012.

Since April 2013, remedial work has been carried out on schools to upgrade existing buildings, based on levels of need, and dealing with roof repairs, window upgrades, playground improvements and wireless fire alarms.

In year two of the programme whole school upgrades were completed with each one taking around six months to finish.

The proposal for the new Gowanbank school campus was first put forward in February 2014 and the plans given approval at an executive committee in September that year.

As part of the new school build councillors also approves changes to the catchment area of Ashpark, Cleeves, Crookston Castle, Darnley and Gowanbank primaries to be effective as of last month.

The Evening Times previously told of St Marnock’s Primary in Pollok where children would watch as rain water dripped down walls and ruined their classwork.

It was one of the schools to undergo a complete transformation thanks to the 4Rs money.

Year three will see new buildings for Glasgow’s primary schools start to spring up around the city when the new build programme of work fully begins.

Some 11 primary schools around the city are seeing extensions with up to four extra classrooms added on to existing buildings.

Merrylee Primary is having four classrooms added on to its campus while Crookston Castle Primary is having a new nursery build in its grounds.

Garrowhill and Glendale primaries will be moving to brand new buildings, as will Broomhill and Dalmarnock.

Carntyne, Blairdardie and Sighthill will also be moved into new build primary schools and several new build nurseries will be created.

Councillor Stephen Curran, executive member for education and young people said: “The new school campus at Gowanbank will be wonderful and I’m delighted we are starting to build new schools again in Glasgow. We are now in the third year of our ambitious commitment to replace or refurbish every primary school and nursery in the city at a cost of £250 million and providing first class learning environments for our children.”