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View: Grid List
Date
1988
Sector
Health Residential Workplace
Budget
< £1m
Themes
Community
Client
MacIntyre
Location
Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire
Size
680sqm
Awards
PA Award for Innovation (1989) Brick Award (1989)
Press
Architects’ Journal (1989) Architects’ Journal (1989) Architectural Review (1988) Architects’ Journal (1988)

MacIntyre was founded in 1966 by a group of parents of children with physical and learning disabilities. Their philosophy was ‘to provide a creative, purposeful and dignified way of life for children and adults’.

MacIntyre Milton Keynes

MacIntyre Milton Keynes provides a community hall with a fully equipped bakery, shop and café run by the residents and a workshop for weaving above, along with greenhouses, a gardening centre and housing for 36 residents. 

The long barn-like community hall, known as Moot Hall, serves as the working centre of the complex. A steep fall in the site has been exploited to organize the two very different kinds of accommodation: at street level the shop, offices and the hall; and at the lower level and at the ‘back’, the workshops and garden centre. 

The residents’ flats are grouped together to make three large houses. Each flat has four besitting-rooms, a kitchen and a bathroom. One operates from street level with a first floor above. Another occupies the back on the same two levels but is entered from a circular stair off the lower-level path. This has its own terrace and steps down to the garden. The other two also open off the lower path and are single-storey, hugging the large central mass of building.

Community

The whole is carefully planned to reflect MacIntyre’s aims. 

Placing the greenhouses opposite a run of timber workshop doors to the Community Hall creates a pleasant, sheltered, street-like space which becomes a hub of activity during the work day. At one end of this ‘street’ is the garden centre from where the working life of MacIntyre is clearly visible. 

The café and shop open directly onto the bakery which allows more residents to encounter the community and reminds the community that the bread is actually ‘made’, not simply a ‘product’.