Connecting Communities for Mental Health
This urban building design explores the link between architecture, natural settings and mental health. Specialists state that natural environment, natural light, and positive activities are all conducive to the healing of mental health. The use of glass and considered placement of the building form are fundamental concerns.
The project aims to improve the mental health of people in Glasgow through a network of Community Mental Health Centres which provides mental health counselling, positive activities, prevention education and other support for patients with mild mental health problems and local residents. Glasgow Health and Inequalities Commission recommends that mental health projects maintain long-term links with the community and use their influence to provide infrastructure development that can better support mental health and wellbeing. Glasgow’s generous city parks provide a rich natural environment of mature trees and grassed areas with open views of the sky and access to sunlight. The city park is an important connecting space between adjacent communities.
The proposed model centre is located adjacent to the Kelvin River between and below the Eldon Street Bridge and the Great Western Road Bridge and with direct access to Kelvinbridge Station. This contained site sits between the open Kelvingrove Park to the South and the linear Kelvin walkway to the North. The natural landscape, quiet and sound of the river flow are contained by the topography and, on its eastern edge, four storey tenements. This mental health centre has sufficient natural landscape and natural light. In addition, the design not only retains the original urban public space, but also extends it to create more green space. The sloping green roof is designed to create a continuity with its environment, both with the local community and the city park, which further maintains the link with the community.