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Cornerstone Angus Court
The project consists of supported accommodation which will allow six people with multiple disabilities to live more independently. This site is located at The Green, Portlethen, which lies a few miles south of Aberdeen. It is a “brownfield” site, which was previously used as a council depot, but for the past few years has lain derelict. This project is part of Aberdeenshire Council’s strategy to maximise the potential of empty sites close to the town centre.
Externally, Angus Court was designed to suit its context by using a mixture of render, timber and Eternit slate which sit happily against neighbouring buildings. Similarly, the building’s scale was mitigated by stepping down to single storey volumes with pitched roofs at opposite corners. The objective was to ensure that Angus Court fits into its context of single- and two-storey houses on Berrymuir Road. It was also important that the building took on a domestic scale, given that the client was keen to avoid any hint of institutional architecture.
Internally, the building was designed to suit the specific requirements of people who are already cared for elsewhere in Portlethen by Cornerstone. Provision has been made internally to allow the six apartments to be easily adapted, as and when the residents’ needs change in the future. The building also meets the Housing for Varying Needs guidelines. Each flat uses “telecare” technology, which enables the people who live there to be supported by Cornerstone staff, while maintaining a high level of independence.
A key part of the design process was the selection of robust internal finishes which will retain their appearance, even if wheelchairs and trolleys come into contact with them. In the end we specified a novel woven wall-covering called Plynyl which protects the walls up to dado level, without appearing institutional. Thanks to the timber kit system we specified, the building has a high degree of insulation and airtightness. The widespread use of “Sunpipes” means that the interior is bright, while underfloor heating combined with heat recovery in the flats means that running costs should remain low.