5 Aug, 2020 | Written by Premis

Taigum State School Facilities Expansion - Project Update

Established in 1957 on a 12-hectare site, Taigum State School was originally known as Zillmere North State School with the name change occurring in 1993. Today, the school caters to over 420 primary and prepartory students from a range of cultural backgrounds.

Citing a need for an expansion to the school’s facilities, Cadence Australia, on behalf of the Department of Education, engaged Premis as the managing contractor to construct two new General Learning Areas (GLA’s) by extending the existing Block F.

Scope of Work

The Taigum State School expansion involved undertaking works on a ‘greenfield site’ — an undeveloped site earmarked for commercial development.

Block F needed to be partially demolished to facilitate the expansion of works, and two new  ‘slab on ground’ GLA’s were built on screw pile foundations. The GLA’s were designed to face north to take advantage of natural light, and shade louvres were included throughout to reduce heat. A new air conditioning system was also installed.

To connect the new building to the existing buildings, a new walkway was constructed which involved minor structural alterations. This ensured a continuation of the walkways and covered pathways. After connections were completed, the new services for the GLA’s were connected and landscaping and ‘make good works’ undertaken around the surrounding areas to tie the new GLA’s to the existing school buildings.

Logistical Challenges

Because the school was to remain fully operational throughout the construction period, the safety of the school’s staff and students was deemed a high priority. The requirement was that there would be no impact to the school’s daily operations, and no negative impact to peak times, including lunch breaks and school drop-off and pick-up periods.

Hence, temporary fencing was erected around the entire site separating the construction zone from the school, and no outside access granted to the site during these times. Trades were also briefed on the times they could and couldn’t arrive on-site during their induction stage. 

Extensive periods of rain were also experienced during the construction period. Premis as a build project specialist were able to manage the situation to ensure there were no delays or impact to the project.

COVID-19 also presented some new challenges, adherence to the Government’s advice and regulations was a top priority. The risks were mitigated by Premis developing their COVID-19 Site Workplan instigating safe work practices, implementing social distancing rules, and reducing the number of workers on-site at any given time. This proactive approach ensured the Premis team were able to deliver the project on budget and on time, maintain the school’s functionality, accommodate delays, and keep the site safe and secure for all.

This is what our client had to say:

‘Work started on time in the first week of school in 2020 and even with poor weather and Covid-19, the build was completed on schedule in May.’

‘Even with up to two dozen workers on site, we had no concerns for the well-being of our students.’

‘At all times, communications between the contractor and the school were first rate.’

‘On completion, the school was handed a high quality building, with an excellent standard of finish that was well-suited to our needs.’

Premis looks forward to working with the Department of Education on future projects.

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