Situated alongside the River Mersey, this proposal works to create everyday interactions with a currently underappreciated site, and integrate the river into the lives of the community. The space has been reimagined as a mental health service day-centre, with the site strategy as a whole catering to the existing local bat population. This project shows how equality can be developed between human and non-human agents through designing to create ecological and economic sustainability.
Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, the UK’s mental health crisis has worsened exponentially. Within the student population alone, at least 34% are experiencing loneliness and social isolation, issues that can very quickly spiral into agoraphobia and anxiety disorders. In the two years since April 2019 there was a 29% increase in patients referred to mental health services for cases of psychosis, often stemming from major depressive disorders.
One of the major difficulties for those experiencing mental health disorders is seeking help, and with increasing strains on the NHS it is vital that we explore all possible methods of support for patients.
Using ecological, art-based and reflective therapies, ‘A Conscious Co-Existence’ looks to create a space for healing and create a sanctuary serving both human and non-human agents.
Architecture can be used as a tool for changing the narrative, and this project aims to alter perceptions of ‘harmful nature’, in this case local bats in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Whilst there is substantial evidence to suggest that contact with nature is hugely beneficial to humans, this is a project demonstrating how we can also serve nature in return.