David E J J Lloyd, Headmaster of the independent school for boys and girls aged from 7 to 18, celebrated the occasion by cutting the first sod on the state-of-the-art building on the Warwick Road campus in the company of the main project parties.
Kingswinford-based contractor Speller Metcalfe has been appointed by Solihull to build the facility, which aims to provide the perfect environment for developing independent learning and intellectual curiosity.
Scheduled to open its door to pupils in September 2015, the four-floor building will include state-of-the-art teaching rooms and private study areas incorporating the latest multimedia technology.
The top floor will provide open-plan space for teaching, examinations and social events, along with an external terrace garden with panoramic views.
The building will also be a model of sustainability, with high levels of natural light and ventilation, low energy lighting, and an energy-efficient heating system.
The new Sixth Form Centre is being built on vacant land previously occupied by the Old Gymnasium, and will be surrounded by the Bushell Hall, Mathematics and Science departments and the Sports Hall.
The project has been designed by Birmingham architects Malcolm Payne Group Ltd and costed by the Birmingham office of quantity surveyors Rider Levett Bucknall, who is also acting as Employers Agent.
Des O’Neill, Divisional Manager at Speller Metcalfe, said: ‘This is a fantastic project which highlights the commitment of Solihull School and its staff to give students the best education possible. The project will not only provide state-of-the-art facilities to the students, but also employment opportunities within the local area.
‘As a local company, we work hard to employ our sub-contractors from within 30 miles of site, enabling us to promote new opportunities and contribute to the local economy.’
Headmaster David E J J Lloyd commented: “The start of work on our new Sixth Form Centre marks an exciting milestone in the creation of a state-of-the-art teaching and learning environment. The superb facilities will enable our A-Level pupils to fulfill their academic potential and prepare for university and beyond.”