Alzheimer’s Respite Centre


This day care and respite centre was commissioned by the Alzheimer Society of Ireland to provide flexible short term care for people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and offer a means of support for affected families.

Alzheimer’s disease affects memory, judgement and language. Progressive damage to synaptic connections in the brain causes disorientation. It can profoundly affect our ability to place ourselves in the world. The challenge in designing a care environment for those with Alzheimer’s disease is to produce calm, coherent spaces which reduce enervating distraction, aid orientation and encourage mobility. Through design, it is possible to alleviate disorientation, confusion and aggression in many people with the disease. We hope to promote sociable interaction and create a greater sense of security by considering the environment carefully.

The centre is situated within an old walled garden. Arranged within this protected place are a series interconnected pavilions incorporating social spaces, serene gardens and courtyards, through which people may wander. A number of pathways naturally loop back on themselves, always returning a person home again. We aim to eliminate any institutional or medical character through the use of careful, bespoke timber detailing, the relaxed flow of internal and external spaces and generous day-lit rooms.

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