Construction firm hired to build top UK school on Saadiyat

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Saadiyat Island

Saadiyat Island

A construction firm has been hired to build Cranleigh Abu Dhabi, to be modelled on Cranleigh School, a leading UK independent school founded in 1865.

It will be the first school campus to open on Saadiyat Island when it opens its doors next year, according to master developer Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC).

The construction contract has been awarded to Al Tafseer Contracting & General Maintenance Company, a UAE-based company, it added.

Al Tafseer is scheduled to deliver the first phase of Cranleigh Abu Dhabi in time for the start of the academic school year in 2014, which includes building of the junior and senior schools, the dining halls, and the sports and swimming facilities by the end of July 2014.

This comes following the completion of all piling and enabling works on site of the development.

Cranleigh Abu Dhabi will also offer boarding facilities - a first for the emirate.

Built over seven hectares of land, with a capacity to accommodate more than 1,600 students, aged from three to 18 years, the school will be one of the largest school campuses in the emirate.

In addition, it will host co-educational facilities comprising separate Junior and Senior schools with each housing its own classrooms, faculty offices, administration offices, dining hall and library.

"I am delighted that our ground works are completed and that we are now building what will undoubtedly be one of the most impressive school campuses in the country. Admissions will open in November for children aged three to 14 and we are looking forward to opening our doors to them in September 2014 as scheduled," said Brendan Law, director of education at TDIC.

Cranleigh Abu Dhabi will be one of many educational institutions located on Saadiyat, such as New York University Abu Dhabi, which will open in 2014, and Redwood Saadiyat Nursery by Kids First Group which will open by the end of 2013.

The school will house specialist facilities for music, science, art, design and technology, drama, dance, and sport classes, as well as state-of-the-art IT facilities with the latest technology including electronic tables provided for pupils.

These will be complemented by a shared 650-seat auditorium, 2,900-square-metre sports centre and 19,300 square metres of outdoor fields with generously spacious recreational areas.

Sporting facilities will include two grass pitches, an Astroturf pitch, four tennis courts, two swimming pools and an indoor arena comprising of two full-sized courts, which can be used for basketball, football, badminton, gymnasium, dance studio and drama suite.

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