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Designing for Whole Life Social Housing


In the face of Ireland’s growing demand for affordable and high-quality social housing, there is a need for a new design approach that prioritises the well-being of residents. Recognising the balance between design and the practicalities of delivering projects at scale, we are tackling and addresses these challenges and looking forward to our projects over the next 12 months 

Space and Functionality for Lifelong Comfort

When starting a residential project design, we are aware that a home’s design should cater not just to immediate needs but also evolving requirements of the occupants. This awareness means that each space within our social housing projects offers adequate room, functionality, and storage to support a growing family, familial changes, accessibly issues and antipated changing needs if aging residents.

Designing for Accessibility and Inclusivity

Inclusivity and accessibility are key considerations that extend beyond regulatory compliance; ‘whole of life’ best practice is the standard to be achieved and this requires thoughtful design choices and consideration at every stage of planning. Integrating step-free entrances, wide doorways, accessible rooms and flexible/multi-functional spaces ensures that homes are open and usable for everyone, irrespective of age or mobility. Extending this mindset to communal areas and outdoor spaces enables residents from diverse backgrounds to interact, engage, and thrive.

Quality Materials and Finishes

Ireland’s construction industry’s commitment to quality materials and finishes highlights the promise of durability and environmental responsibility. Through our involvement with the Irish Green Building Council, Lean Construction Ireland, and other forward-thinking industry organisations, Townmore is helping to lead this charge. Selecting high quality materials not only increases the visual appeal of social housing projects but also ensures a long life span and ease of maintenance. The focus on quality contributes to the sense creation of neighbourhoods that residents are proud to call home, fostering a sense of community pride and belonging.

Energy Efficiency and Sustainability

Embracing a sustainable approach, our team integrates energy-efficient solutions from the start of each of our projects. The ‘fabric first’ strategy being adopted by many Approved Housing Bodies, together with the use of green technologies, minimises environmental impact while reducing living costs. Sustainable features such as green roofs can further lower these costs, creating a more sustainable and less expensive future. 

Creating Community

Understanding the vital role of communal spaces in social housing, means every Townmore project includes gardens, playgrounds, and shared outdoor areas to build strong communities. By incorporating essential amenities like childcare, healthcare facilities, and community centres, we believe we are enhancing the convenience and well-being of people.

Collaborative Approach to Delivering Homes at Scale

To address Ireland’s urgent housing needs, there is a need for collaborative partnerships among governments, developers, architects, and contractors. Streamlining planning and approval processes, and adopting innovative solutions like adaptive reuse and brownfield development, are critical to increasing the pace and scale of social housing delivery. 

Through this collaboration, innovation, and focus on quality, Townmore is building Ireland’s social housing landscape, ensuring that every project we start has a lasting, positive impact on all residents.