Design principles for great retirement living lifestyle revealed

The Property Council of Australia and ThomsonAdsett have released a new guide for designers and developers of retirement communities, to ensure they are able to capture best practice design elements that lead to great experiences for residents.

Best Practice Principles for Seniors Community Design is aimed at anyone who has an influential role in the design, re-design, construction or development of retirement villages and other seniors’ communities.

Ben Myers, Executive Director – Retirement Living at the Property Council of Australia, says the new guide goes well beyond physical design.

Best Practice Principles for Seniors Community Design not only considers the buildings that make up a village, they also capture the dynamics of a thriving community, especially those elements that promote social connectedness and better wellbeing,” Mr Myers said.

“The guide has been developed by world renowned architecture firm ThomsonAdsett, with considerable advice from a group of recognised industry leaders, who are all passionate about delivering great outcomes for their residents.

“The guide has been deliberately created with communities of all kinds and sizes in mind; the principles can be brought to life in a high-rise apartment tower or a conventional broad acre village, by large companies, not-for-profit organisations or start-up ventures.”

Tieran Kimber, Group Director Seniors Living at ThomsonAdsett, says the principles cover all aspects of a resident’s experience in a seniors’ community.

“The principles focus on the components of the physical environment – both internal and external – that a resident has access to,” Mr Kimber said.

“There’s a real focus on resident expectations, including their strong desire to live independently, while still ensuring villages can meet their evolving lifestyle needs. There are comprehensive sections on safety and security, wayfinding, linkages, authenticity, innovation and many more.

“The guide is not prescriptive – for instance, it does not mandate specific fixtures and fittings. Instead, it recognises that great design is the result of best practice thinking that encourages real innovation and a true resident focus. The principles will enable co-design where providers and developers can work with the design principles to enable bespoke responses in a particular location.”

Download Best Practice Principles for Seniors Community Design here.