Carlingford Independent Living

project scope: The proposed development provides a quality option for older people who wish to “right size”.
The principles are to provide independent living options, with convenient access to the established community as well as benefitting from communal and support facilities on site

context: The development occupies the site of a disused quarry and is located in a semi-rural coastal setting. It is on the east facing slope of Carlingford Mountain overlooking the town and Carlingford Lough beyond. There is an established nursing home on the adjacent site so the step-down village extends the range and level of possible care settings for the elderly. Located just 5 minutes walking distance from the Carlingford village allows its habitants to fully participate in the life of the established vibrant community.

sustainability: GoKu designed the step-down village to Passive House standard to provide health & comfort for its habitants as well as reducing Co2 emissions and running costs for the management company. The carefully designed integrated landscape takes advantage of the existing site features and promotes biodiversity. The home-zone principles allowed for densification of the site while at the same time contributing to the sense of community and safety through passive surveillance, attractive landscaping and universal access.

community: The project created a link between Carlingford and its outskirts, physically joining the places by paths but also socially by providing community facilities on site for use by the wider Carlingford area. Facilities include a cafe, man-shed, workshops and treatment rooms designed as a hub at the public entrance to the development.

design challenge: GoKu aimed for best practice rather than bare minimum of building regulations in terms of sustainability and universal access. Simple rural forms are referenced for the individual homes with a regime of modern detailing and a careful choice of materials suitable for its context: stone, plaster, timber, slate and glass.