A new care home is being built in Balloans Field Healthcare Village by Tej Manda. He is the developer, financer and main contractor of the project- started around twelve years ago.
The 60-bed, West Heather care home, located on West Heather Road, Inverness, will employ between sixty and sixty-six staff, of which 80% will be full-time workers. Work began on site in June 2010 and is expected to be complete by March 2012.
The building is a 2½ storey timber kit with rough-casted block work, finished in snowcrete render and red facing brick. All rooms are single rooms with a shower ensuite and the minimum room size is 14½m² with a 3.5m² shower ensuite making each living space a minimum of 18m². There are three rooms, each at 22m² for less able occupants. The inhouse facilities include a laundry, lift, kitchen, food preparation and storage area. There are four stairs and a boiler room. There will be a treatment room on each floor. There are reception, administration and visiting rooms for medical and social work professionals.
Externally, a small amount of landscaping will take place and there will be parking space for approximately 24 cars.
Timber kit was supplied by Scotframe and Colin Armstrong Jones are the architects.
Michael Rose is the project manager for the scheme and is responsible for overseeing the placement of work packages and the day-to-day running of the site. He said: “Due to the modification and republication of the HSE guidelines, we have had to keep the entire timber frame fire-proofed throughout the construction period – something that I personally have not encountered before. However, despite this, work is progressing well.”
Tej Manda also commented that work was progressing as expected. He said: “Everyone is working well. The care home standards will be better than those expected by the care authorities.”
The site is included within the Healthcare Village, which received planning permission in 1998 and is mostly complete. The care home is in the middle of the village, which consists of 58 retirement houses and 11 general purpose houses to give it a population mix. The Highland Council recommended the care home project, despite objections from local residents who were concerned about issues such as increased traffic and the implications for parking.