Powderhall Intergenerational Passivhaus Facility




ARCHITECTURE: Future Building or Project


Collective Architecture


City of Edinburgh Council


This future project is the first of its kind in Scotland and include an intergenerational, Passivhaus facility which combines an Early Learning and Childcare Centre for 128 children with 27 older person’s independent-living homes above. This facility will offer health and wellbeing benefits for the residents, and new learning and social opportunities for children attending the nursery.Designed to meet the Passivhaus standard, the building will provide high-quality spaces that are comfortable, healthy and consume minimal energy. This will create an optimal learning- through-play environment for the children and help to address the acute housing needs of our ageing population. All homes have been designed to allow residents to age in place and live within their community for as long as possible.The building is designed to nestle into its context and employs a contemporary material palette of pigmented pre-cast concrete and brickwork, along with a repetitive window pattern and architectural detailing which reference the neighbouring buildings. The L-shaped form has been positioned to maximise benefit from solar gains, securely enclosing the south-facing nursery gardens, and providing active frontages to the entrance square and pedestrian routes. A portico connects the nursery and residential entrances which provides opportunity for chance encounters between the two user groups on their daily activities. In addition, a generous access balcony with integrated window seats provides a sheltered external area for residents to socialise and creates a visual connection to the nursery gardens below. Further resident’s areas include a shared roof terrace and communal garden with sensory planting.The new Early Learning and Childcare Centre, which will be managed by Broughton Primary School, will allow for the existing nursery provision to relocate to this new facility. This will provide more childcare places for the local community and open-up more space for the primary school.  It will also have a multipurpose room which will be available for public use via the school lets system.Civic space provides an attractive, biodiverse entrance into the site and demarks the threshold between Broughton Road and the pedestrian prioritised development. Improvements to St Mark’s Path, part of Edinburgh’s Quite Route network, are also proposed, together with a new outdoor educational space for Broughton Primary School, again available for community use via school lets.Community consultation has been at the heart of the project and has helped shape the proposals from the earliest opportunity.