5 Mary St Drummoyne, NSW
“It’s these little individual and personalised touches that allow the residents to feel like they are ‘home”.
This project showcases our ability to create an environment that is functional but also aesthetically warm and inviting. From the outset the client was driven by innovation, wanting to set a new benchmark in the excellence of care through integration of the latest ‘dementia supporting’ technologies in step with the De Hogeweyk dementia model from the Netherlands.
The Village was designed to replicate a neighbourhood environment, with nine households named ‘Casa’s’ in close proximity and accommodating 6-14 suites each. Inspired by an Italian forum, the ‘village piazza’ was designed to be a dynamic, vibrant meeting place, sympathetic to the needs of the residents. Responding to these needs, we contributed to the design inclusions through the chapel, hairdresser, trattoria and café all equipped to ensure resident safety.
To support an enriched quality of life for residents at The Village, we designed the spaces to promote normal daily living, including fully equipped kitchens and warm homely lounge rooms. Each casa (room) has a distinct front door to assist way-finding and each resident suite has a different memory box. It’s individual and personalised touches that allow the residents to feel like they are ‘home’.
The integration of cutting-edge technology presented a great opportunity. We wanted to ensure the technology could achieve the greater care objectives without compromising the intended warm, non-clinical aesthetic. For example; to take the focus away from the high care equipment, we seamlessly integrated patient tracking systems through sensored flooring and pre-programmed lift technology operating by a swipe system. This security feature allows residents to gain access to their suite floor as well as the communal, piazza space. This not only promotes safety but motivates the residents to remain physically and socially active.
Ease of social interaction was especially important to the design as many of the residents have an Italian background and culturally place value on interacting and engaging with other residents as well as family and visitors. Taking social interaction into consideration, we seamlessly designed the lift faces to resemble front doors to further foster this feeling of ‘going out’ and leaving their home. Such details add to the overall empowerment and contentment of the residents. It’s this forward- thinking at the design stage that can add years to the life of a project.
The success of The Village as a benchmark aged care facility is reflected in the level of positive PR received to date and their being awarded with Best Aged Care Facility, Australian Healthcare Week Excellence Awards 2018.
Bickerton Master Architecture
Ryan Linnegar Photography
Aged Care Design