New facility completed on site of Roman remains in East Lothian
A new centre by NHS Lothian, developed for the town of Musselburgh, brings together three local GP medical practices and fifteen primary care departments into one building; providing integrated local health care facilities for the community. Primary Care services include Physiotherapy, Dentistry, Podiatry, Adult Mental Health, Psychiatry, Speech and Language Therapy, Occupational Therapy, an Outpatient Department and Children’s Health Services.
Two messages came through clearly during community meetings and by working with each department to understand what they needed; ‘We want the place to be light, bright and airy’; ’All visitors and staff should feel welcome and be able to find their way easily’. To achieve this, the scheme incorporates a central boulevard running east to west with three storey NHS accommodation on the north and the two storey GP Practices to the south.
An ETFE roof spanning the entire length of the boulevard lets light flood into the building all day, whilst courtyards and terraces bring light and space into the plan. The boulevard has public entrances at both ends, an arrangement that maximises accessibility for patients. Varying roof heights reduce the mass of the building, which steps down towards the south to facilitate daylight penetration, and allows the 6,300-sq-m structure to fit comfortably within its residential setting. Receptions for each GP Practice, Children’s Services and Primary Care Services are arranged along the boulevard providing accessibility and visual clarity for all users.
The building has achieved BREEAM Excellent and incorporates a number of sustainable features which include natural ventilation, sedum roofs to capture rain water and replace ecological habitat and a combined heat and power system that provides some of the electricity for the centre. Natural products such as linoleum flooring and timber cladding are used. The development is adjacent to and overlooks the site of a Roman Fort and indeed an abundance of Roman remains were discovered on the site prior to construction. The project was completed on budget and on programme and will open to the public in May 2012.