The new dynamic complex of 7 low- energy houses for people with disabilities, is placed in the heart of the community directly beside the Local Resource Centre, with easy access to the town in Logmore, Belmullet, Co. Mayo. The units were custom designed to include high tech adaptations which maximise independence and wellness in buildings.
The Housing development ‘An Fraoch’ designed by Studio Negri was a joint venture between the Irish Wheelchair Association and Mayo County Council. It cost €1,25 million to build and was mostly financed by the Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government’s Capital Assistance Scheme [CAS].
During the design and construction phase, the 2 bedroom houses were specifically tailored to the tenants’ requirements. A wide range of assistive living technology was specified by Studio Negri in order to enhance independent living. These include electronic openers and closers for internal and external doors, windows, curtains and blinds, including infra-red light switches and sockets. All these items are operated from a remote control, including height- adjustable kitchen worktops to cater for every eventuality. The master bedroom and en-suite have a concealed tracking hoist for easy access to both rooms. The entrance to the houses are well-defined features, each with a distinct colour inspired by the local landscape for individuality and make them easily identifiable.
A generous covered porch protects from the elements and is well lit at night. The entrance hall has a lobby, as the winds in Belmullet are frequent and strong and this also assists with the airtightness of the house. Each room including the corridor has a 1800mm turning circle to cater for power-wheelchairs. The walls have a 150mm cavity filled with insulation and additional 100mm dry-lining that line up with the insulation in the floor and an airtightness membrane to ensure that the internal environment is warm and comfortable. The blower door test got excellent results that exceed the A3 Building Energy Rating requirements. The Mitsubishi air-to-water heat pump powers the underfloor heating and works with night-rate electricity at a 400% efficiency rate.
Overall the sustainable housing development is an asset to the community, promotes independence and self-sufficient living with a positive outlook to the future.
Studio Negri were delighted to be part of this eco-friendly development and aim to do more projects with excellent green credentials.