Architecture as the Enabler; Facilitating Independent Lifestyles for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities
This thesis aims to inform the design of a living, learning community for individuals with Intellectual Disability (ID) and to establish performance criteria to inform more effective architectural interventions. Historical interventions have isolated individuals with ID, deteriorating their quality of life. This thesis proposes an education, recreation base with residential accommodation designed to provide an engaged community which nurtures independence. The performance criteria consists of three umbrellas: architecture for support, comprised of community, staff-user relationship and family support, architecture for ID, comprised of accessibility, avoiding anxiety, and sensory needs, and architecture for independence, comprised of learning environment, social connection, and self-determination. The design consists of three buildings: The Walker Centre as a place to host social interaction, Kōwhai House which serves as the residence for clients, and The Learning Hub as an education facility assisting in the gaining and retention of life skills.