Arc Centre, Ty R Ardd

  • Location

    Bridgend

  • Client

    Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board

  • Value

    £1.9m

  • Completion

    2009

  • Size

    950sqm

Mental Health support hub to unite the community

The 950sqm building forms the hub of a Mental Health support community. Taking inspiration from the words ‘access to multiple facilities under one roof’ the brief included a single storey building with flexible spaces. The site also had to deliver the Local Authorities aspiration of a ‘gateway building to the town centre’. The building aims to raise the profile of mental healthcare in Bridgend and South Wales. The large inclined copper roof brings a height and presence that introduces protection and shelter to the area and the curved plan form responds to the site geometry.

We worked with the adjacent residents to produce a facility that was sympathetic to the surrounding housing, whilst still presenting a bold façade to passing traffic. A sloping roof with large overhangs creates a building that is 3.5 metres high at the rear but over 9 metres high to the road. Neighbouring residents praised the design for respecting their privacy and responding to their domestic scale properties.

The Ty R Ardd building utilises space through the abolition of corridors and introducing one big central hub, from which all facilities can be accessed and easily observed. Distinctive and social, this light and airy space supports the progressive nature of the mental health service; without barriers and open to all. Spaces such as this are often difficult to justify on cost grounds in such a small building, but being able to use the cost allowance for ‘corridors and circulation’ in an innovative way has brought benefit to all.