The centre began as two separate projects, a leisure centre and a primary care centre (PCC) that involved two clients, two architects with Cundall being the common denominator providing multidisciplinary services for both. Through collaboration with all parties involved these two buildings combine to deliver excellent healthcare and leisure facilities to the local community.
Both buildings share external car parking and landscaped areas, front and rear entrances, 2-storey part-glazed atrium and a detached energy centre building. The sharing of these common facilities allowed both clients to achieve savings in capital costs. The sharing of a common energy centre
allowed both to benefit from reduced running costs and reduced carbon emissions.
The leisure centre designed by S+P Architects and delivered as part of Gateshead Council’s ‘Building an Active Future’ programme, was procured under the Scape framework. It includes a six lane 25 metre swimming pool and learner pool, as well as a gym. Additional changing rooms are also provided for outdoor sporting activities to take place on the adjacent pitches.
The Primary Care Centre for Sunderland Teaching Primary Care Trust was designed by P+HS. It includes minor injury walk-in unit, GP practice and extensive planned care facilities including services for breast screening, diagnostics, dentistry and physiotherapy.
The combined building complex achieves an ‘A’ rated energy performance certificate, with the PPC achieving a BREEAM ‘Excellent” rating and the leisure centre a BREEAM Very Good rating.
The incorporation of a common energy centre allowed us to design a highly efficient system and achieve greater utilisation of the Low and Zero Carbon elements. Headline sustainable features include:
- Wood burning boiler installation backed up with high efficiency gas-fired condensing boilers
- Combined heat and power plant sized to absorb all of the generated heat and power on site, into the site wide systems
- Air source heat pump, heat recovery, technology providing heating and cooling in the fitness room and studio space
- High efficiency ventilation heat recovery systems incorporating cross flow recuperators
- Variable speed drives on all fan and pump motors
- Provision of pool covers
- Rainwater recovery and distribution system serving flushing cisterns and urinals
- Naturally ventilated atrium space
- High efficiency lighting installations incorporating automatic switching
The electrical systems serving the PCC building, the energy centre, common spaces and all external areas are backed up a standby generator unit. In the event of a full power outage, the primary care centre will continue to operate normally.
Cundall have carried out Flood Risk Assessments for the project to determine critical levels to the facility’s operation during extreme events. The building is located on a historical floodplain and weak soils, as a result the foundations are piled with a fully suspended ground floor structure. The structure was designed with in-situ concrete floors designed to act compositely with the steel frame.