Fresh air fuels learning at Teesside Academy

March 1, 2012


A design and build firm which recently received a massive boost to its minor works division following an investment from NEL has kicked off a contract to renovate a Teesside academy.

As well as carrying out general refurbishments across the Ormsby Road site, Koru Property Services is conducting a complete overhaul of the ventilation system at Unity City Academy to improve the natural flow of air through of the building. The works follow concerns that certain pockets of the building were overheating, according to measurements taken last summer and other areas could be extremely cold during winter periods.

The contract, worth £480,000, is expected to rely on 20 on-site workers during its peak and is expected to be complete in time for the students’ return after the Easter break.

Peter Day, construction manager for Koru Property Services said: “The work essentially involves installing a new chiller to the roof, ventilation systems into the kitchens and adding air ventilation passages between every floor, which will improve the flow of natural air around the building.

“Having worked with several educational institutions across the North East, including Teesside University, Koru Property Services is well versed at quickly executing a range of contracts, from complete rebuilds to minor refurbishments, with minimum disruption to students and of course, well within budget.”

The contract at Unity Academy follows a series of contracts delivered by Koru Property Services in the Teesside area. The firm, which employs 40 members of staff, is currently completing a £255,000 contract to convert a presbytery into five self-contained apartments at St Alphonsus Roman Catholic Church on Westbourne Grove in North Ormesby.

The reception at Unity City Academy has not been spared from the onsite works and is being given a complete makeover to include a new disabled toilet and a new staircase.

Derek Griffiths, vice principal at the academy, added: “The issues being addressed by this project, have troubled the Academy since the Main building opened in 2004. The works being carried out by Koru, are the culmination of a three year project, beginning with a detailed investigation programme and moving to an engineered solution. As part of the project, we were very keen to reduce energy consumption and reduce our carbon footprint at the Academy, therefore the redesigned solution makes as much use of natural ventilation as possible. The Academy is extremely grateful to the DFE and the YPLA for their continued support without which this project would never have happened.

“Koru Property Services were awarded the construction contract following an extensive procurement process, managed by Turner and Townsend. They won the contract on cost, competence and previous project experience in the educational sector.”

“Everyone at the Academy is looking forward to the work being completed. We know it will have a very positive impact on the learning and progress of our students.”

Further information about Koru Property Services is available at

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