Council to express concern over design of proposed secondary school

How Littleport's new £30million school development could look.

How Littleport's new £30million school development could look. - Credit: Archant

East Cambridgeshire District Council has criticised the design of the proposed new secondary school for Littleport.

How Littleport's new £30million school development could look.

How Littleport's new £30million school development could look. - Credit: Archant

Officers say that overall the design of the buildings is ‘not high quality’ and that they remain concerned that some of the materials being proposed for the construction will make the problem worse.

In a report set to go before councillors next Tuesday, planning officers will say: “The overall design of the buildings does not form a holistic high quality design and there is concern over the materials being used that will further harm the final appearance. “The design should be referred and reviewed again by the Cambridgeshire Quality Panel and the design either agreed or amended to reflect the panel’s comments.”

The council will also call for more landscaping for public spaces and an assessment to be carried out to ensure that the building has a ‘very good’ energy efficiency rating.

“A condition should be used to prevent the demolition of the existing leisure centre until the new one is ready for use,” officers will also request.

Councillors will decide whether to approve the officer’s feedback at a meeting of the planning committee next Tuesday.

Cambridgeshire County Council submitted a planning application for the long-awaited secondary school and leisure centre complex late last month.

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The development will cost an estimated £30million and, if approved, will see the current leisure centre in Camel Road demolished to make way for a secondary school, special school and new leisure facility.

The site will also house a new primary school during a later phase of building work, which the council says will be complete by 2020.

The schools will be run by Greenwood Dale, an academy trust which manages more than 20 schools across East Anglia.

The schools were scheduled to open in September 2016 and, despite delays in acquiring the land, the county council insists it is still “working towards” that date, though it admitted the start date for building had “slipped” from summer to autumn 2015.

The secondary school will cater initially for 600 pupils aged from 11 to 16, with the potential for future expansion up to 750 pupils.

The special school on the same site will cater for 110 pupils aged from two to 19 with special educational needs.