Creating housing that works for people of all ages requires outside-the-box thinking and a bold vision.
Combining apartments, social areas, childcare, work spaces, health care facilities and a spiritual center, Skyler is a “place where generations commingle, where the young can invigorate the old and the old can mentor the young,” Hollwich explains.
The imagined structure contains 600 residential units, including micro studios for millennials, duplexes that serve as single-family residences and co-living apartments that foster community.
Amenities include laundry and grocery shopping services as well as shared transportation options.
The existence of supportive, aging-inclusive communities could reduce the frequency of older people moving to assisted living facilities and nursing homes since, Hollwich notes, many residents in such places “are there because of social deficits, not physical deficits. They are craving a sense of community.”
“It has been the easy solution to say, ‘Old people go here and young people go somewhere else,’” says Hollwich, who’s also the author of New Aging: Live Smarter Now to Live Forever. “That has been the architectural response to aging for the last hundred years.”
But, he adds: “If you design for older people, you can create places that are good for everyone.”
Making Room: Housing for a Changing America was published in 2019
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