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Presentation College Bray

Following a 2000 competitive interview, PKA was appointed by the Board of Presentation College, and the Department of Education and Science, as lead architects for a major redevelopment of the all-boy secondary school in Bray, Co Wicklow.

PKA's initial brief was to renovate an existing three-storey sixties' building, along with the addition of new general classrooms and specialist accommodation for the school's projected total enrolment of 600 pupils.

The condition of the existing structure turned out to be worse than anticipated, and PKA's feasibility study found that the most sustainable solution was to demolish the existing building and replace it with a new classroom block.

Having had this proposal accepted, PKA developed concepts to incorporate the new block into a campus-style assemblage of new and old, including a new sports hall, an existing changing pavilion and the first-year classroom block. PKA's plan groups these around a quadrangle, to give the school a new identity and a strong sense of place.

Standing opposite the new sports hall, the three-storey classroom block contains a central 'street' on each level, punctuated by glazed atria that bring light into the lower levels and whose indoor planting provides 'green' interludes to the enclosure of the otherwise internal corridors.

The second element of PKA's design - the single-storey sports hall - has a clear-span mono-pitch roof structure that is lit by a number of skylights as well as a continuous clerestorey rooflight along its north elevation.

Presentation College won the Best Education Building category for PKA in the 2013 RAIA Awards.

Client: Board of Management, Presentation College
Value: €6,000,000
Size: 5,185 Sq.m.
Reference: On application
Design: 2001
Completion: 2011