The project brief is to provide accommodation for residents over 55 years of age, and planning for a sustainable long term future in their homes. Overall buildings should sit comfortably into the street scene, reflecting local materials and character. The housing mix should be a combination of 1 bed and 2 bed flats with a percentage of these sized to be wheelchair adaptable.The flats were to ensure accessible and barrier free living, enabling residents to live independently as increasing frailty, mobility and sensory problems arise with age. Providing a secure, low maintenance home environment was also important, as well as allowing individuals to find privacy, comfort, support and companionship, within the housing development as a whole.
The client has indicated an aspiration for a development with high quality design which is complimentary to the local context. In keeping with the neighbouring mixeduse residential development opposite at The Victoria, which is currently under construction, the proposals will provide much needed barrier free and accessible housing for the Battlefield area.The development should encourage residents to live sustainably, with ease of habit. The contribution of green space to health and wellbeing alongside biodiversity is also of key importance. The terrace balconies running the length of the complex will provide access to each residential unit, and a place to meet and greet passing neighbours. The social aspect of the development is further enhanced by the potential for ‘chance meetings’ with residents of other floors at the circulation cores. Although only small, these interactions are vital to help residents combat loneliness and feelings of isolation.The design development of the site takes into consideration the scale and proportion of both the existing context, as well as the construction of ‘The Victoria’ to the opposite side of Grange Road.
Whilst remaining conscious of its surroundings the building aims to hit the following key design principles;
• Regenerate a prominent abandoned site • Encourage interaction through walking.
• Maximise open space and landscape opportunities to enhance setting.
• Utilise familiar forms, materials and elements in keeping with local character.
• Provide excellent accessible living.
• Encourage interaction through walking.