Retirement & Ageing - Tall Trees Oxenford
Less like a hospital, more like a hotel
The Tall Trees Oxenford Retirement Community is situated on the Gold Coast in Australia.
As with all Tall Trees’ projects, careful planning of the utilitarian aspects to ensure the community develop a sense of pride and maintain their dignity while aging was required. Also important to the project was the ease of circulation for both residents and for the provision of care services.
When we approached the aesthetic and functional design elements, we created a space that looks and feels more like a hotel and less like hospital or nursing home.
The mediocre, institutional feeling was omitted by breaking down the double loaded corridors and introducing external voids that create opportunities for gardens, light, and a natural wind chimney that allows cross ventilation across the apartments.
The built form is designed to create an Australian semi-rural aesthetic, with the leisure centre to appear as a weatherboard shed.
The independent apartments underwent extensive modeling to determine the most appropriate thermal comfort temperatures.
The Zoning Challenge
Within 400 metres of the Oxenford Retail Centre, this rural zoned site was an opportune location for a supported living community, however the site’s current zoning was a stumbling block.
Working with the planning consultant, we needed to demonstrate to council the site’s merits of being closely located to the retail centre and the minimal impact the home would have on neighbouring residents.
In addition, we needed to communicate the inappropriateness of the site’s current zoning as the rapidly growing Gold Coast region surrounded a small pocket of the rural suburban area.
While initially resistant, council eventually accepted the proposal based on the merits of the scheme, the sites location, access to services and the need for seniors housing.
Deflecting the sound
Due to its proximity to the M1 Motorway, the leisure centre was designed to deflect sound from the highway and act as a buffer to the independent living units.