The Process

Many of the 185,000 Australians in residential aged care live in poor conditions. A substantial body of research has established the design requirements to best support people with dementia, sensory impairment and other personal constraints common to aged care residents. Yet, few facilities effectively support the basic needs, of residents let alone the more sophisticated social programs offered by innovative providers. The Strategic Improvements Project provides a four step building renovation program. It ensure that even small amounts of funding can be directed to incrementally upgrade existing facilities, thereby improving the lives of residents.   READ MORE

Constructive Dialogue Architects

Constructive Dialogue is an architecture firm focused on supporting aged care and other social programs with architectural, strategic planning and project management services.  READ MORE

Past Projects
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Strategic Improvements Project

...making better places to live step by step

Reinstating a courtyard a centre of community life

In this project, independent living units and residential aged care were colocated within a building. The building was disorienting as it comprised of a maze of convoluted corridors and dark unused communal rooms. At the centre of the building was a courtyard that contained an disused swimming pool and little other usable space for people to use (see photo below). The space was unattractive, hard to access and a barrier to movement around the building.

DESIGN IDEA: Provide gardens that are thoroughfares for everyday life, are easily accessible to residents and include contained spaces with different qualities. Include a range of activities that encourage residents to go out and use gardens.


PROJECT: The design shown above involved filling in the pool to create a trafficable space, integrating shade trees and sitting space, opening up the side of the building with large sliding doors and integrating sunshading to provide some shelter to the transitional spaces from the rooms to the courtyard.