Shawbirch Medical Centre Telford, UK
Having outgrown their previous premises and with the anticipated increase in patient numbers due to new housing developments, the Shawbirch Medical Practice required a new, purpose built facility to serve their growing patient list.
Having worked unsuccessfully to develop proposals for a number of years, the Practice approached Corstorphine & Wright to help deliver the new building on a site approximately half a mile from their current location.
The aim was to provide a new building on a corner plot which offered more accommodation and also to bring about a variety of NHS services within the local community, should the opportunity arise. As with all primary care buildings, patient experience was placed at the centre of the design with legible, spacious public areas which were user friendly and easy to navigate.
We tried to create a building which establishes a patient centred experience whilst improving accessibility, safety and well-being to all users. The building should improve staff working conditions which leads to an improvement in staff morale, recruitment and retention which in turn should help deliver a better level of service.
Senior Architectural Designer
The building occupies a corner plot along the main Shawbirch Road and Brandon Avenue. It was therefore fundamentally important to address this corner position in the architectural language.
To achieve this, a main entrance was positioned on the corner. A secondary entrance was provided to the opposite side of the building facing the car park.
The building is two storeys high with a flat roof so it doesn’t overwhelm the domestic local environment. The material palette seeks to have a softer impact on the surrounding area. The textured buff brick reflects the nearby residential properties and adds visual interest whilst the contemporary timber cladding relates to the tree lined road. The key driver for the fenestration of the building is to break down the building mass. Inside, patients are greeted by a double height space with a rooflight providing natural light into the centre of the building. Staff administration areas overlook central waiting spaces giving a good level of natural surveillance while the use of frosted glazing gives the requisite level of privacy.
The building’s shape was driven by two major service easements running across the site. This posed a particular challenge but at the same time created a unique opportunity to create visually interesting plans and elevations.
The building delivers a contemporary healthcare solution both externally and internally. The atrium helped create a sense of arrival within the building, but also helped create a central space from which all main spaces radiated. It has also provided an improved patient and staff environment.
The building achieved BREEAM Very Good and featured a number of environmentally beneficial features including PV solar panels, SUDs, smart heating and cooling systems and a highly efficient external envelope.