Bob Rumball Centre of Excellence for the Deaf is a unique long-term care project in service of deaf seniors. It is the only one of its kind in Canada.
The building is judiciously designed to promote and preserve deaf culture, language and heritage while also honoring the qualities of its generous rural site and the local rustic vernacular. A total of 64 residents live in a cluster of cottage-like homes overlooking Lake Simcoe. Despite being on a single level, the building achieves variation and articulation in its expression by incorporating a series of double-height amenity spaces, including dining, living and multipurpose rooms, in its plan. These spaces are as open and spacious as possible to support congregation and communication through signing. There height is also conducive to clerestory windows and skylights that help improve visibility with diffuse natural light without harsh shadows and silhouettes. Materials, finishes and fixtures were carefully selected with the client to meet the highly specific needs of hearing-impaired seniors.
Both public and private spaces benefit from engaging views of the surrounding landscape. Residents are encouraged to enjoy the outdoors with easy access to terraces, courtyards and a network of pedestrian walkways.