MBS builds innovation centre in under four months

For the Mosa-RT school in Maaseik, Friday 21 June 2019 will be remembered as the day it opened its brand-new innovation centre. For Machiels Building Solutions (MBS), it will go down as one of the company's toughest-ever deadlines. "We only started the assembly work during the spring holiday in early March," says CEO Filip Vercauteren, "yet the opening ribbon had to be cut before the end of the school year." No mean feat, but MBS once again proved its credentials as a school-building specialist.

Dubbed the 'incubator for education', the new innovation centre on the school's Weertersteenweg campus will provide a versatile space for carrying out experiments. "This is by no means your typical school building," Filip notes. "It comprises a number of high-ceilinged spaces that can be tailored to the requirements of each lesson. There is also scope to deploy the latest technology such as virtual and augmented reality, as well as a news studio and the potential to work with outdoor classes. In other words, this new facility opens up almost endless possibilities for the 3,000 pupils and 500 members of staff.

600-m² showroom

A number of the pupils were involved in fitting out the innovation centre. "Essentially, the 600-m² interior is one big showroom," says Filip. "The school's wood and welding departments produced all the cupboards and the kitchen, for example." The exterior timber cladding is green to emphasise the building's sustainable design.

All pulling together

Working with Machiels Building Solutions proved to be a very positive experience for the school's management. Technical advisor and coordinator Ronald Swennen says: "It's amazing what can be achieved in a short time with careful planning. MBS shows what can be done if you make the very best use of people and resources."

Bart Beuten, the staff member who oversaw the works, agrees: "We are really pleased we chose MBS. By all pulling in the same direction, we managed to complete the project in record time. It was a great example of industrialisation in construction."

► Want to see more inspiring examples of industrialised timber-frame construction? Check out our other school-building projects