Determine the Context

On all new developments consideration should be made to determine the most appropriate site for the school within the wider development. Guidance on this can be found in the Developers Guide.

After the site has been determined and prior to any detailed work, it is necessary to identify and understand the character of the site and its surroundings and prepare a full context appraisal. Any new development should respect character, style, scale, proportions and materials of the existing buildings and relate satisfactorily to a wider masterplan.

Context appraisal methodology

  • Establish the character and identity of the area (rural, urban, and suburban);
  • Identify the character of the landscape and open spaces in the proximity of the site.
  • Identify architectural style and typology of existing buildings
  • Appraise positioning of the existing buildings on site, circulation routes and access points;
  • Identify the character of the existing building forms and their relationship on the site;
  • Identify existing materials, fenestration patterns and architectural details;
  • Prepare a list of design elements to be addressed. The context and site appraisal must precede or accompany the planning application. For examples and details on site appraisals see Understanding Context.

Type of Development

  • New Build
  • New communities
  • Extensions
  • Temporary classrooms
  • SEN schools
  • Boarding/accommodation

Page updated: 11/09/2019

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