Lakeview – Uniting Care Aged Care

Client: Uniting Care
Project Detail:
Residential aged care precinct
Project location:
Shellharbour, NSW
Calder Flower
Donnelley Simpson Cleary
Project Value:
$19 million (approx)
Commencement date:
Mid 2010
Completion date:
July 2011

Project Brief:

Uniting Care is leading aged care provider and approached Vim Sustainability in 2008 to provide a range of sustainability consulting works for their new sustainable Aged Care development at Lakeview  in Shellharbour;  NSW.

This is a medium sized project consisting of a 100 bed Residential Aged Care facility located right near the coast of NSW.

Local Climate Analysis:

As an initial sustainable design response, Vim Sustainability familiarised themselves with the client brief by identifying the required comfort temperatures for both internal and external conditions. A detailed climate analysis was then undertaken to identify the client’s relevant parameters and climate design issues to ensure that the design met the following conditions:

  • Design suited the location of where the building was built.
  • Design met the client’s functional requirements.
  • Design minimised resource usage.
  • Design maximised occupant comfort.

The thermal neutrality for the location was calculated and a detailed local climate design response document was created which then informed the design strategy for the design team.

Software Modeling:

From early days Vim undertook detailed building software modeling diagnostics to identify the optimum design parameters around daylighting and thermal comfort, building heating and cooling loads and natural ventilation.

Figure 2: No light shelf in the resident room.

CFD Modeling

Detailed CFD air flow modeling was undertaken to investigate the efficiency of natural ventilation to common areas using a thermal chimney. This was later disregarded as unpractical and to costly due to the building design. As the design developed further investigative  works were provided around Photovoltaic and Windturbine renewable energy options and relevant solutions and daylighting design reviews using light shelves and then increased windows sizes in order to evaluate the best outcomes. This was undertaken using our ‘Radiance’ luminosity ray tracing software.

Different glazing iterations for each facade were run in the thermal and energy Design Builder model as were a range of internal comfort conditions and shading options all with the aim to identify the most comfortable and energy efficient design options

Return on Investment & Paybacks Calculations:

Once the building design had been finalized we undertook an investigative review of running costs, ROI and paybacks options for a range  of ESD initiatives  and provided the client with paybacks on the outcomes of those analysis that reached to 20 year’s time. This was a large amount of work and led to some interesting discoveries for the client around the impacts of rising electricity costs on their facilities and the value of reducing heating and cooling loads and the adaptive comfort standard etc on their energy usage levels.

Final Design & Recommendation:

Consequently the building fabric was maximised from a thermal perspective resulting in a reverse brick veneer building fabric outcome and some other fabric design and shading initiatives. WINDCATCHER® natural ventilation systems were introduced into the upper floors in the common areas. Double glazed high performance glass was also utilised in combination with the maximised insulation levels, decided as a result of our software analysis and thermal calculations ensuring comfort conditions were maintained across the year with minimum energy usage levels.

This modeling works was undertaken using Design Builder and Energy Plus software.  As the design developed we also undertook a section ‘J’ JV3 Modeling performance assessment for the facility assisting the client to get the building past the BCA requirements in the most cost efficient way possible.