18
Jul
09

Motherwell Children’s House

View from Albans Crescent

View from Albans Crescent

GCA have been working closely with North Lanarkshire Council Social Work department to develop new Children’s Houses throughout the district. Motherwell Children’s House was completed in June 2009 with the new residents moving in early in July.

The 6 bedroom house is designed to meet the standards set out by the Care Commission. The brief was developed in close consultation with young people, care workers and management in order to tackle the day to day issues encountered in previous buildings.

We developed a plan that created open plan multi-purpose space with bedrooms accessed directly off this space. Lack of activities and boredom were a common theme during consultations and we have created a space to accommodate and provide for facilities such as computers, art, music and games as well as comfortable areas where young people can relax without feeling they are being supervised at all times. This is also reflected in the outdoor courtyard style garden where a small kick about pitch, basketball area and decked area provide for a range of outdoor activities.

Activity Space

Activity Space

The building is set within a residential area, predominantly of post war non-traditional house types and we have attempted to reflect the scale and materiality of the surrounding buildings. The courtyard elevation is dominated by the larch clad cylindrical bedroom pods, each housing three bedrooms with en-suite facilities. The dining and lounge area open onto a south facing deck and a view over the whole garden area.

Garden

Garden

GCA were also employed to provide interior design services. This involved consultation with the house staff and the new residents where they were involved in selecting colours, fabrics and furniture for their bedrooms and the rest of the building. This also helps in the transition to moving into such a different environment as their active involvement in the process encourages a bit of ownership in the building.

art area

art area

For a relatively small building, the brief developed is quite complex on several levels including the planning of how spaces work together to create a secure and homely environment. The involvement of the people who will work and live in the building from an early stage has been key to the success of the end result.

Further Photographs are available at http://www.flickr.com/photos/scarpadog/sets/72157621259582283/

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