They Don’t Fit the Profile . . .
I stumbled upon an article written by Amy Johnson, a Content Strategist for Criterion.B an agency focused on branding and inbound marketing for the commercial real estate and multifamily housing industry. She characterizes Boomers as having “no intention of settling into the assisted living or a retirement homes like their parents did (they actually dread the thought).”
That means that CCRC’s, or Life Plan Communities, or Life Care Communities need to be more focused on wellbeing and a “lifestyle centered around entertainment and leisure”. (Does the name Margaritaville ring a bell?). Perhaps the industry should shift nomenclature to Life Style Community. After all, we are seeing a big shift from Care to Wellness, as reflected in the 2018 Report by the International Council on Active Aging.
Tim Mullaney summarized that report in an article that appeared in Senior Housing News:
Over the next five years, these are the wellness programs that will increase the most overall, the survey found:
- Education and lifelong learning
- Exercise (both instructor- and technology-led)
- Health education and disease management
- Food and nutrition education and preparation
- Inter-generational programs linking youth and older adults
Johnson astutely draws the conclusion that the New Urbanism could indeed be just the ticket – and I think she’s on to something significant. In fact, she has inspired me to launch a blog series exploring many of the ways that New Urbanism and Senior Living are not strange bedfellows at all. The Aging Services Industry is changing rapidly. Players will need to be nimble in order to remain relevant.
So, here’s the first Great Idea that the New Urbanism provides for Senior Living: The Neighborhood and the 5-Minute Walk. At a normal walking pace, one can walk about a quarter of a mile. Just think of the design and lifestyle possibilities offered by bundling many different land uses and destinations within that quarter-mile radius. Coffee shops, restaurants, art galleries, financial advisors, doctor’s offices, parks, shops, entertainment – the list goes on and on. That’s why we’re seeing senior living as an anchor tenant in mixed use developments today.
When you plan and design for walkability, you’ll increase the livability of your community, and will be enhancing wellbeing for everyone!
Baby Boomers Don’t fit the Profile – They’re not like their parents! Providers are shifting to a lifestyle centered around entertainment, leisure, and wellness in order to remain relevant to the new market. We believe that a lot can be learned from the New Urbanism about enhancing wellbeing for tomorrow’s seniors. This is the 1st in a 7-part series highlighting Great Ideas for the Aging Services Industry from the principles of New Urbanism.
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Brad Smith Associates, Inc. is a mold-breaking exterior planning and design firm serving the aging services industry. Our approach puts people first, focusing on their unique needs while cultivating a deep sense of community. That is done by using a rational problem-solving method, infused with Imaginality™, combining the five key components of PLACE-Creation into our designs:
Planning - Applied foresight to achieve your project goals
Lifestyle - Delivering a better result for people by understanding their needs and lifestyles
Aesthetics - The aesthetics of a property speak to the "brand essence", greatly affecting marketing.
Community - a sense of meaning, identity and belonging for the people living there
Economics - informed decision-making on the front end during the design process can yield significant dividends on the back end (by reducing ongoing operations and maintenance costs).
We're landscape architects and planners by profession, and we love putting our talents to work to create value for you.
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