The following case studies are examples of how several schools, working in partnership with the Schools Landscape Programme, have been able to develop a whole site strategy which enabled them to look at their outdoor spaces in new and exciting ways.
For instance, car parks have become play and social spaces, the boundary between inside and outside areas has been blurred and site security/safety and access issues have been addressed.
Otterbourne Primary School
A complex site - hear how a complex site can benefit from the process:
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A small, restricted site within a residential, urban area. The site is dominated by a large, red brick Victorian building. To the front is an all tarmac playground, to the back an Early Years area, to the side a staff/visitor car park and a further tarmac area designated as a ‘no go’ area for pupils. The whole site strategy identified the opportunities for:
Relocating the car park
Redesigning the released, sheltered area
Utilising the ‘no go’ area
Construction of an outdoor learning space
Comments from school demonstrate how stepping back and taking a long term strategic view has brought lasting benefits.
"The process was invaluable as we gained a thorough understanding of the whole site and the needs of the children before developing our ideas with expert guidance."
A large secondary school with significant community use, situated on an extensive site, located on the edge of a residential area.
The whole site strategy identified the opportunities for:
The relocation of the car park to a less central area.
The redevelopment of the space into a social and recreation area during break times.
This large site is located within a residential area. It is situated on an extensive campus which is shared with both an infant and a secondary school.
The strategy identified new opportunities for:
Improved physical links between the Infant and Junior buildings.
Redesign of an untidy, sheltered space into a social space for break time
A small, tight site within a residential area, where the school had new buildings planned.
The whole site strategy ensured that the most valuable spaces for education were safeguarded:
The back area was to be the key space for development for outdoor education and summer play.
An alternative location for the new extension was identified.