The Gardens Elderly Center has its background in contemporary research indicating that elderly people's well-being in care centers strongly correlates with attractive outdoor environments and social interaction. Therefore all apartments are clustered around common spaces with easy access to outdoor gardens and shared facilities. This acts to strengthen the sense of belonging and participation by enabling dynamic social interaction between residents, staff, relatives and others. The building's unique profile aims to make it an attractive and inclusive living environment for the elderly - a home where everyone can feel safe, involved and self-sufficient.
With age and illness often comes loneliness and isolation from society. The Gardens set out to create a sense of inclusion by energizing the home with centralized areas of high activity near the entrance and lobby. This common area is the hub for daily activities and includes mailboxes, a hairdresser, foot clinic, restaurant, and conference rooms. It is a source of stimulation where all can come and find company and interaction.
The plan consists of a cohesive rectangular building, punctuated by various sized atrium gardens. Breaking down the building's facade in scale and relate it to the context it inhabits, roof and exterior walls are clad with facade panels in grass tones. The internal facade is tactile and sensible, using timber panel facade material connecting to the internal spaces. For ease of orientation, the unit's communal rooms are glazed in connection to the gardens, also making the greenery and trees apparent from the inside. Plantings scale the facade on trellises to overhead second floor terraces and outdoor spaces in the gardens. The floor plan gives the residents the ability and independency to access the gardens and common areas according to their needs and allows them to wander along the circulating paths through the building and the gardens.