Uniting Aged Care (UAC) had an ageing 45 bed facility on the site that needed replacement after serving the community well for many years. Acquisition of surrounding residential lots provided enough land to stage the construction of a new facility while the existing facility remained in operation. The site had a difficult shape which required a creative solution to introduce a legible access point to the new building. The resulting two storey 68 bed facility is now complete and ready to serve the next generation of elders.
The nexus of the site was used to establish the entry point to allow vehicles to bring visitors through the site to a new carpark in the location of the old building. The entry area divides the aged care from the community care areas. The path to the aged care beds circulates through the semi public areas including a large chapel/multipurpose hall, a hairdresser and a volunteer run café. A basement kitchen and laundry service the building. The building has a number of ESD features including 120,000 L of storm water storage for use in the gardens and WC’s, a solar boosted hot water system, a building envelope engineered for energy efficiency, energy saving lighting systems and a passive cooling system to all the aged care bedrooms.
The architectural design was inspired by the surrounding residences. Horizontal ‘prairie style’ lines were used to sit the building in its location. Finely detailed blockwork of varying colours and sizes give a stone like appearance to connect the building to the landscaping. Lightweight materials contrast to the blockwork providing a light and open contemporary building. The internal spaces draw on the colours of the landscape to provide a warm and friendly interior.