ROCKPANEL Woods have been used in the creation of a modern facilities hub, at the heart of a traditional retirement village based in Edgbaston.
The Birmingham suburb of Edgbaston provides a meeting place between the rural and the urban. Inspired by this combination of traditional and modern, Nicol Thomas Architects designed a new retirement village for the area’s Hagley Road.
Independence, communication and socialisation were at the heart of the ExtraCare Charitable Trust’s Development brief for the Hagley Road Village scheme. Each of the development’s 240 apartments was to be completed to a standard which exceeded the expectations of the tenants; meanwhile, on-site facilities were designed to stimulate a sense of community.
‘The arrangement of the frontage ‘villa’ blocks, their materials and urban grain all respect the local heritage,’ explains architect, Nicol Thomas. ‘The elevational treatment and building footprint of the central facilities hub represents a current and more contemporary vernacular, providing contrast between the ‘old’ and the ‘new’ in a careful and subtle way.’
ROCKPANEL Woods were specified to clad the walls of the modern facilities hub within the village. The product’s non-repeating grain finish helped to bring the building into harmony with the wealth of shapes and colours found in the trees surrounding the site.
Whilst almost indistinguishable from real wood, the boards, which were supplied for the project by Taylor Maxwell, are fabricated from basalt, using the same manufacturing approach which is used on all ROCKPANEL products.
The panels were supplied in the carbon oak colour option for an understated, modern twist.
To encourage an open atmosphere, whilst exhibiting the natural surroundings to residents, the central hub has been created using a circular footprint. The mechanical properties of the ROCKPANEL Woods boards allowed them to be curved to the building’s dimensions with standard tools.
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