Ronald McDonald House is an independant Charitable Trust providing a home away from home environment for families with seriously ill children needing to travel to Wellington Hospital for specialist medical treatment. Families live in the house for as long as their child needs to be treated, for some families it may be one night, for others it may be many months. The entire length of the stay is free. Due to increasing needs including the redevelopment of Wellington Hospital, this new facility replaces the current house, which was originally designed to accommodate 10 families. The new facility will accommodate 34 families in a variety of apartments, and room accommodation, together shared with communal living facilities. Situated on the western side of Riddiford Street, directly opposite the Wellington Hospital, the objective was to create a contemporary and recognisable building, which acknowledges and compliments its urban context, whilst creating a welcoming retreat for its occupants.
The overall design of the building is broken down into a series of vertical bays, acknowledging the predominant pattern of building width in the Newtown area, and gives a domestic scale to this sizeable development. The design has been carefully considered to ensure that all adjacent bays are distinctive, to articulate the expression of a group of individual buildings, whilst maintaining a design language that unifies the building as a whole. The result is an exciting contemporary building, which provides a positive addition to the city