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Landscape and tradition, our sources of inspiration

From the outset of the Oleyck care campus project, we wanted to highlight the unique landscape of Hageland, its large open spaces and its notable reliefs. We structured the site by creating three distinct places: a public square that opens the complex, a green space linking the generations, and the nursing home’s large courtyard at the heart of the campus. We have given each building a distinct typology according to its function. All of them together combine to give a multitude of atmospheres to the shared outdoor spaces where the city and the landscape intermingle.

With this in mind, the new nursing home takes advantage of the landscape and maximises the views from the residents’ rooms. The building is built around a courtyard, evoking the traditional square farmhouse. This contemporary reinterpretation of a typical rural model of the region fits harmoniously into the neighbourhood, characterised by significant agricultural activity.

Relations between built and open spaces in the masterplan of the campus

A place of care for all ages

A truly multifunctional complex, the project combines care and hospitality facilities for users of all ages, whether they are permanent residents or day visitors. The serviced residences for the elderly are housed in linear buildings whose smaller sizes are integrated into the landscape, parallel to the surrounding land’s relief lines. The situation of the nursery and children’s centre promotes interaction between generations and between residents and other users. The reduced scale and the placement of buildings helps to maintain perspective and create human-sized meeting places.

We designed each building with particular attention to its functionality and the quality of the sensory experiences of its occupants. A balance between full and empty volumes brings natural light and fresh air into the living areas, ensuring fluidity between indoor and outdoor spaces. Abundant daylight and the legibility of buildings and spaces contribute to an environment supporting health and well-being for all residents of the Oleyck campus.

View of the nursing home's patio

A sustainable and ambitious holistic approach

Each choice we made was evaluated according to its environmental impact and the life cycle cost of the buildings. The nearly passive design of the infrastructure drastically reduces its energy needs. We made maximum use of renewable energies, such as geothermal energy, and implemented the digital centralised management of technical installations. Rainwater is also collected, filtered and reused on site. We designed each building to be flexible,  allowing for future changes in internal organisation. The external spaces between the buildings have been designed to create a pleasant microclimate, encouraging users to take ownership of them.

The Oleyck care campus is the epitome of our vision of a sustainable health infrastructure, with the lowest possible impact on the environment for this generation and beyond. In addition to the technical and functional aspects, being sustainable provides us with a healthy living environment that encourages a relationship between people and their environment. It’s about creating adapted spaces where it’s a pleasure to live and work. It’s about promoting the inclusion of everyone in society. In recognition of these ambitions, the project received the 2016 Belfius Smart City Award for its holistic approach to sustainability.

The Oleyck care complex is the epitome of our vision of a sustainable health environment, with the lowest possible impact on the environment for this generation and beyond.

Stef Vermeulen architect, managing partner leuven

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