Unidades de Residências Assistidas / Vida Independente
This project gave us the opportunity to think about and try to understand the way older people perceive space and time. We worked on the design of this space with tenderness, we thought about our parents and grandparents, what determines their comfort and wellbeing. We had to consider important conditions such as security, mobility and the absence of architectonic barriers.
Despite all the OAP design restrictions, the image of a health care unit was not to be obvious, hence we adopted the challenge of designing a space that could answer the necessities of older people and at the same time could be seen as an original and beautiful space.
Further to these concerns, we also wanted the external areas to be architectonically consistent with the buildings, the constructive system and future maintenance should be economically sustainable.
The external area is composed by two inner patios, entirely surrounded by buildings, with generous dimensions that must be seen from the inside as scenic spaces. Even though these spaces were meant to work as external extensions of the inside leisure areas, they constitute self-sufficient leisure areas, with different ambiences whose singularity is given by the fact that they are outside.
The patios are wood paved areas, easy to walk on, pleasant and compatible to be used by wheelchairs. Vertical elements (birdcages, pergolas, benches) arise continuing the materiality and organizing subspaces with specific uses. Wood is used throughout, covering the ground; standing up to create vertical panels and also creating shading structures.