Taigum State School was established in 1957 on a 12-hectare site, and today caters for over 420 primary and prep students. Premis was engaged as the managing contractor to extend the existing Block F to accommodate two new General Learning Areas (GLA’s), as part of a much-needed expansion to the school’s facilities.
Works were undertaken on a ‘greenfield site’, which is an undeveloped site earmarked for commercial development. The GLA’s were designed to be north-facing to maximise the natural light, shade louvres were installed throughout to reduce heat, and new air conditioning was also installed. Partial demolition was required to the existing Block F to facilitate the expansion works. Two new ‘slab on ground’ GLA’s were built on screw pile foundations, and a new walkway installed connecting the new building to the existing school buildings.
Minor structural alterations to the existing building were needed to accommodate the new connection and a continuation of the walkways and covered pathways. All new services for the GLA’s also had to be connected. Once the connections were completed around the surrounding areas, landscaping and ’make good works’ were undertaken around the new GLA’s to tie them to the existing school buildings.
The safety of the school’s students and staff were deemed a high priority as the school was to remain fully operational throughout construction, and there were to be no impacts to its daily operations. To achieve this, temporary fencing was erected around the entire site to separate the construction zone from the school.
During the school’s peak times of lunch breaks and school drop-off and pick-up, there were to be no deliveries or outside access to the site. Construction works could also not impact or alter these times for the school. To ensure we met these requirements, trades were advised during their site inductions the periods when they could and couldn’t arrive on site.
During construction, the Premis team also experienced extensive days of rain. The program had to be managed effectively to ensure this didn’t impact or delay the project.
Another issue faced during construction was the emergence and subsequent challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. To mitigate this risk, we reduced numbers on site, implemented social distancing and daily site cleaning, and adhered to the Government’s regulations and requirements. This proactive approach ensured we were able to deliver the project on time and budget, accommodate delays, maintain the school’s functionality, and keep all those on-site safe and secure.