Students at Ron Dearing University Technical College (UTC) in Hull got a glimpse of what their state-of-the-art school will look like once the expansion is complete.
The employer-run school in Kingston Square has been oversubscribed every year since opening in 2017.
Following significant funding from the Department for Education (DfE), it is increasing student places from 600 to 800 to meet growing demand.
The first phase of the expansion, which was completed in August, involved redeveloping areas of the existing school building to create two new science labs, a new science classroom and other
independent study space for sixth graders.
The second phase includes the renovation and repurposing of the former central fire station next to the school into a satellite site.
Contractor Sewell Construction hosted a mixed and augmented reality (AR) tour of the former fire station for design and construction team of Ron Dearing UTC students, who used the latest holographic technology to bring the architect’s plans based on a 3D model of the site.
They used helmets, hollow-lens gear, tablets and cellphones to visualize exactly what each area of the building will look like, scanning QR codes to identify different parts of the project.
Mark Boothby, joint managing director of Sewell Construction, said: “Until this technology becomes more available, the only way to see the
end result was on a fixed screen or wait for it to be built.
“Now you can take it on site to compare it to the real environment, rather than having to rely on 2D information, and this approach will be used even more widely in the years to come.
“It’s important to us to show students where industry and technology are heading and it’s extremely important that they are aware of this. Some of them may want to work in the construction industry and this shows them the future.
The ground floor of the former fire station will house a “smart” exhibition center that will allow UTC students and employer partners to showcase low-carbon technologies with the aim of leading the “green revolution” throughout the territory. It will also serve as a creative exhibition space to host artists in residence, art exhibitions, art markets and community art projects.
The first and second floors will house STEAM Studios, which will provide UTC’s growing creative specialization with three art and design studios, a ceramics room, printmaking facilities and two high-tech digital labs.
The first floor will also house a new sixth grade center. Work on the Ron Dearing UTC expansion began earlier this year after Hull City Council approved the plans.
Hull Esteem Consortium LEP Ltd act as project leaders on the expansion plan, Space Architects drew up the plans and BuildingPoint UK and Ireland provided the technology for the student visit.
Lynn Garland-Collins, Director of Creativity at Ron Dearing UTC, said: “The tour highlighted the importance of learning digital skills to unlock new opportunities in the future and help students embark on careers. exciting opportunities in the creative, construction, digital and renewable energy sectors. ”
“Our creative journey is in high demand and we are delighted to be able to welcome so many more Year 12 students to such wonderful, purpose-built and creative facilities. The extra space and specialist facilities also mean we can increase the creation number
qualifications we can offer including A levels in graphic design and product design in addition to the photography, fine art and iMedia courses we already offer.