RPK was recently retained to provide functional programming, cost planning, and schematic design services to GEF Seniors Housing for a 1.92 ha site located in the Elmwood neighbourhood at the corner of 87th Avenue and 157th Street. The initial design brief included 100 seniors independent living apartments, 60 seniors’ lodge living suites and 20 dementia care suites, creating an aging-in-place environment for local residents. The scope also included an analysis of an existing building on the site, the Meadowlark Lodge, to determine the feasibility of converting it to house Chronic Mental Health residents.

The new flagship building will carefully consider the adjacent Valley Line LRT as it creates urbanistic challenges for the site and limits vehicular pedestrian access. However, given its proximity to the LRT, RPK is excited to follow the City’s guidelines for Transit Orientated Developments (TOD) for the development. Density, contextual adjacencies, mixed-use programming, and parking considerations ensure careful calibration of all decisions.

RPK has been involved with two public open houses to engage the community in the design process and garner meaningful feedback. The first community meeting did not include any building design work and was used to gather information and ideas from residents to learn about what they felt were important considerations for the facility.  For the second open house, we prepared four schematic building and site design options. Each of these was presented to attendees, with the community welcome to express their thoughts either verbally or in writing.

Once complete, our schematic design report will be used to assist the owner with garnering government and financial support for the project.