Steel skeleton start of 'vibrant' era for St Mary's College in north Hull
HUNDREDS of tonnes of steel have gone up at a city school, marking the first phase of a multi-million pound facelift.
Morgan Sindall Construction is putting up 450 tonnes of steel at St Mary's College in Cranbrook Avenue, north Hull.
Work includes the demolition of a 1960s teaching block and the construction of a new building, which will be in Inglemire Lane.
Within the new teaching block there will be a state-of-the-art 300-seat theatre for both students and outside groups, such as The Royal Shakespeare Company.
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The remaining buildings on the site will be refurbished and a new sports hall has been designed to meet the standard for international trampolining.
Paul Limb, project manager for Morgan Sindall, said: "The steelwork is an eight-week programme that involves us building to a height of three storeys.
"This work also includes us putting staircases and lift shafts into place.
"In order to speed up the construction of the new school, and to cause minimal disruption, we decided to manufacture these parts off site, transport them to Hull, and lift them into place.
"In the next stage of the project, we will begin cladding the outside of the building and putting its roof into place."
The work is being carried out under the city's £400m Building Schools for the Future project.
It is one of 19 projects across the city that will see every secondary school and special school rebuilt or remodelled by 2014.
Esteem Consortium is responsible for delivering the schools.
Sam Whitaker, chief executive of Esteem, said: "It is always pleasing to see the first stages of one of our developments being put into place – a tangible reminder of the ambitious plans for this school, which are set to become a reality.
"I must commend the onsite Morgan Sindall team members who are making sure this fantastic development continues to be built on schedule and within budget.
"Soon, the staff and young people will have a building and facilities they can be proud of."
The school will be finished and handed over in October next year. All work onsite will then be completed by July 2014.
Ged Fitzpatrick, head teacher at St Mary's College, says it is an exciting time to see the new development beginning to take shape.
He said: "It's amazing to see the rapid progress Morgan Sindall is making on this project.
"We are delighted with the efforts of the onsite team to minimise any disruption to our students during the building phase.
"This heralds a new, vibrant era for St Mary's College and we eagerly anticipate the world- class facilities that will further enhance our outstanding educational offer for the city of Hull."