"All parties are working remotely, but using cloud-based software, we have been able to continue with client meetings, workshops with the school teams, and coordinate activities with consultants."
A North Wales construction firm has been appointed to design and build up to 13 early years provisions for schools across Flintshire.
Wynne Construction is in the design stage of Flintshire County Council’s multi-million pound contract, with the project offering wraparound childcare for three- to four-year-olds, providing support before and after school.
The Bodelwyddan-based contractor will deliver indoor and outdoor environments ready for children to use by mid 2021.
They will incorporate a mix of new buildings and refurbishments and will be constructed using Wynne Construction’s off-site modular process, which adopts a ‘fabric first’ design approach. This provides high levels of insulation, therefore making them energy efficient and reducing running costs.
The overall carbon footprint is also lowered due to the manufacturing process being carried out off-site, resulting in reduced travel to and from each of the sites.
Each of the facilities include indoor and outdoor play areas, kitchen space, adult and children’s toilets, a meeting room and reception area with room for pushchairs.
Chris Wynne, managing director at Wynne Construction, said: “We are pleased to strengthen our existing relationship with Flintshire County Council, having recently completed works at Ysgol Penyffordd and been appointed at Ysgol Glanrafon, Mold.
“We used our off-site methodology at Ysgol Penyffordd and will continue to do so on these projects. It’s a form of construction which involves assembling sections off-site and then delivering them to the school, meaning less operational work around children which improves health and safety.
“We look forward to working closely with social services, design consultancy and education teams to create calm, uplifting and safe areas that will benefit the community through childcare support.”
The plans are part of the Welsh Government’s 21st Century Schools Programme. The completed project will ensure there is sufficient childcare in the right areas, supporting co-location. Currently, three- to four-year-olds are entitled to a minimum of 10 hours a week of funded early education.
Andy Garner, design manager at Wynne Construction, explained how they will overcome the added challenge of liaising with multiple different schools. He said:
“We are adopting our Building Information Modelling (BIM) Level 2 accredited protocols. These protocols and associated cloud technologies allow us to manage the flow of information between ourselves and client partners. They provide us with a platform to share all information for approval, alerting us and partners to actions required and the next steps for each of the schools. Our clients also benefit from streamlined updates. BIM helps us lead the way in our industry, working more efficiently and improving project delivery.”
“In addition, we have overcome challenges presented by COVID-19 to ensure we are still on programme. Our processes and in-house technologies have ensured that our collaborative design stage procedures have not been affected by the government’s lockdown requirements.
“All parties are working remotely, but using cloud-based software, we have been able to continue with client meetings, workshops with the school teams, and coordinate activities with consultants.”
Wynne Construction operates throughout Wales and the North West of England, and regularly leads on projects in sectors including education, healthcare, and sport and leisure.
The company is also on the North Wales Construction Partnership (NWCP), for projects £2m - £10m in value, and the South-East and mid-Wales Collaborative Construction Framework (SEWSCAP3) for projects valued between £10m - £25m.
In November 2018, it was named SME (up to 250 employees) of the year at the UK-wide Constructing Excellence awards.