The refurbishment of an outpatient centre in south Leeds has created additional space to amalgamate mental health services in the area.
Aire Court Community Unit in Middleton provides community-based services to the surrounding area and the building was recently remodelled by QAD Architects on behalf of Community Ventures for Leeds Partnerships NHS Foundation Trust.
The scope of the project was to refurbish and extend the existing facility to enable patient services to be relocated and to incorporate three other mental health services alongside the existing older patient unit. Due to service pressures, these works were carried out while the building was in operation.
Designed to achieve a BREEAM sustainability rating of ‘very good’, the brief meant careful analysis of the requirements in terms of accommodation and clinical provision for each of the different services, while ensuring that each retained its own identify.
An important element that allowed this brief to be forfilled was the construction of the 132sq m reception area at the front of the building. Formed using a glulam structure with a built-up roofing system and a glazed façade, the extension forms a light and airy reception area and a focal point to the entrance of the building. Individual links are formed from this area so that each service is represented uniquely and ensuring that wayfinding is kept as clear as possible.
The existing areas of the building where also extensively refurbished and remodelled with all finishes and services replaced so the varying specialist needs and facilities for each service were provided for.
A spokesman for Leeds Partnerships NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The enhanced user experience and improved service delivery and ways of working that the building can now facilitate is a model for the trust going forward and we look to use the principles established on this project to assist in the future consolidation of the trust's estate assets”