There was a significant shortfall in appropriate accommodation for Aboriginal people with a disability residing in and around Dubbo, NSW. Existing group home accommodation presented some challenges, particularly for Aboriginal tenants where different tribal backgrounds and family history can result in conflict. Some potential tenants required significant assistance and supervision to fulfil their desired daily activities and engage with the community.
Funded by the Department of Social Services, the Supported Accommodation Innovation Fund (SAIF) provided the capital required to build Platinum Standard accommodation units for six Aboriginal tenants with a significant disability. The units constructed by Housing Plus at 3 Frith Street, Dubbo, far exceed the minimum requirements under AS1428.1. A number of units are fitted with specialist ceiling hoists and all amenities are compliant with circulation space
requirements design for access.
During the design stage, Housing Plus undertook extensive consultation with members of the local Aboriginal community, including elders, the local lands council and local working parties, to ensure the development was culturally appropriate and supported connection with community.
Regular communication with local residents from the outset of the project enabled individuals to voice their concerns and opinions, leading to greater understanding and support for the project.
The Aboriginal tenants currently residing in 3 Frith Street, Dubbo, have immediate assistance from on-site carers. The dwellings are suitably fitted out with appropriate modifications for each resident, with established landscaping to provide them with access to lifestyle areas that are
functional and aesthetically pleasing. This project was our first exposure to the Liveable Housing Guidelines and Platinum Standard construction.
AWARD WINNING DESIGN
The development won the ‘Multi-Residential’ and ‘Paul Dass Memorial’ awards at the 2014 National Design Awards.