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With the reality of our aging population increasing at an unprecedented rate, the need to rethink housing for our seniors is a critical area for architectural contemplation. Current norms in Canadian senior housing tend to focus on institutionalized and medicalized models or socially segregated retirement communities which isolate individuals. These models also tend to mainly address the long term care needs of a small proportion of the elderly and do not address the emergence of the larger portion of the senior population – those of the “active third age”. There exists in this emerging condition the potential to unlock greater social contribution than is currently imagined by retirement and architecture can play a role in this by facilitating aging in place. Through the course of this fellowship, an investigation into different cultural approaches to housing will be made to understand the current issues facing senior housing and where we can move forward.

 

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