What Do Office and School Refurbishment Have in Common?
GDL Interiors carries out both office and school refurbishment throughout London and the Home Counties and, although these might initially seem like quite different types of project, there are a great many similarities. Here we take a closer look at what these apparently different types of refurbishment have in common:
Flexibility – Schools and colleges are trying to accommodate greater numbers of students and a modern, wide-ranging curriculum in the same space, just like offices are trying to provide multi-functional spaces for more employees. Whereas a company may have the option to move premises if their workforce grows, a school rarely does. So the emphasis for many school refurbishment projects is on designing space to be flexible and multi-use. For instance, classrooms which can be used for different subjects at different times of the day, or sports halls which can also be used for assemblies, plays and musical events. We offer a full space planning service to take into account your different needs and can offer a range of solutions to maximise flexibility such as movable partitioning and storage.
Incorporating New Technology – Offices increasingly need to plan in data cabling and power to enable up-to-date technology at every workstation. And schools are increasingly going the same way, needing charging stations and data connections for laptops and tablets to be used in all types of lessons, not just science or computing. Many of the school refurbishment projects we currently undertake have capability for new technology as a key driver, with educational establishments keen to offer the most up to date resources to their students.
Identity – Just as many businesses want to include their brand or corporate identity into their office design, so schools and colleges frequently have a strong sense of identity and history, going back decades or even centuries, which they want to convey through the design of their premises. Even newly built schools understand the importance of establishing a strong and positive identity within the local community. Buildings and interior design can go a long way to achieving that, through creative use of colour and materials. As well as helping to choose materials appropriate to your identity, we can also incorporate school logos and emblems on walls, windows or furniture in key places such as in reception areas, libraries, lunch rooms or assembly halls, to encourage a sense of cohesion and pride.
Modern Facilities – Office workers don’t spend all their time at their desks and neither do school students. Both need access to facilities such as washrooms, showers, eating areas or kitchens, which are not just hygienic and functional but smart and appealing. Many schools and colleges are used not just by students, but may also be used as venues for a range of other events such as conferences, training courses, evening classes or community meetings. Indeed, having modern, presentable facilities can open up valuable sources of income for schools and colleges, often helping to offset the cost of refurbishment. Our school refurbishment service covers all such facilities and can include all types of utilities including electrical and plumbing.
Strict Regulations – All refurbishment projects need to comply with a range of regulations governing the safety and suitability of buildings and furnishings. For instance, both workplaces and schools need to comply with DDA legislation, providing adequate access and facilities for disabled employees, students, or visitors, and we have a wealth of experience in helping organisations of all kinds upgrade their premises to meet these requirements, whatever the age or size of your building’s occupants. General building regulations apply to all types of premises, of course, but we are also fully familiar with specific regulations applying to different types of uses, such as the School Premises Regulations. All those involved in the construction and maintenance of school buildings have to comply with these regulations, which cover a range of issues likely to be affected by a refurbishment including toilet and washing facilities, lighting and even acoustics.
Hard Deadlines – Just as our office refurbishment clients need us to complete work on time in order to minimise disruption to their businesses, so schools and colleges need us to ensure that any work is completed within tight timescales, for instance within school holidays. We have a strong track record of project management to complete work on time, arranging our time on site around your schedules. One of the ways we achieve this is by managing all subcontractors ourselves. This enables us to ensure that all trades are on site when they need to be, to minimise delays.
Office and School Refurbishment by GDL Interiors
At GDL Interiors we apply the same skills and flair to the refurbishment of schools and colleges as we do for office projects. While there are obviously some specific differences in requirements, they are far outweighed by what they have in common – a desire to create inspiring, practical and durable spaces for human beings to do their best work and feel a sense of belonging.
School Refurbishment – Talk to us about your requirements today.