Designing senior living facilities means creating a new place to call ‘home’ when it is often difficult to leave the familiar surroundings in which a person has lived for so long. Change is not something most of us easily embrace, especially when we are attached to our physical environment and the routines that accompany it.
With this in mind, there are certain design aspects that favor a warm welcome to those entering senior living facilities and make it an easier transition for loved ones and their families. What should be included in the design and construction of a successful assisted living community?
3 Senior Living Facilities Features Worth Considering
1. Choose an Inviting Location
Yes, it’s important to find an area that isn’t dangerous or noisy, but your environment should also be inviting and not cut off from society. Feeling isolated is a common challenge among those living in senior housing.
However, you can remedy this by selecting a location that is included in the everyday life of the community. This may be nearby a school, community center, or other fairly busy local area. You might also consider a location that has beautiful views and opportunities for outdoor activities.
2. Safety Matters
This is obvious but crucial to highlight, in what’s considered a ‘must-have’ for construction and design. As physical and cognitive function may begin to diminish among residents, it’s important to keep up with all safety precautions and building codes that are associated with this type of commercial real estate development.
Take special care to ensure safety in:
- Window placement and operation
- Exterior access to the building (sensor lighting at entry points, etc.)
- Accommodations for natural disaster emergencies
- Handrails/bars and other fall prevention features throughout
- Customized bathroom layout and materials that protect against falls
- Centrally located nurse and staff areas
- Secured outdoor areas
- Quality lighting
- Wide hallways and entry/exits
Meeting all ADA standards in every structure of the building process ensures legal compliance as well as accommodating a large number of seniors at varying degrees of independence.
3. Aesthetic Appeal
Driving up to a community with fountains, gardens, trees, and porches is a warm-welcome to visitors and residents alike. Emphasizing the details that relate to aesthetic appeal is not only good for signing contracts but especially for mental wellness.
Promoting a peaceful environment goes a long way for staff, residents, and visiting loved ones. Outdoor landscaping might include aesthetic building styles (ranch, cottage, colonial, Mediterranean, etc.) as well as wrap-around porches, swings, gazebos, walking paths, ponds, etc. While budget definitely plays a part in what’s included, it’s important that everything appears well cared for, clean and neat in appearance.
Overall, it’s always important to maintain a balance between ensuring safety, accessibility, and an inviting environment that respects a resident’s independence as much as possible. These aspects are often at the heart of choosing a location, layout design, amenities, and much more. As you apply long-term considerations to your design plan, you’ll see a big payoff in the years to come.
Plaza Companies is the Premier Choice of Commercial Real Estate
Plaza Companies is a full-service real estate firm specializing in the leasing, management, construction, and development of some of the most innovative commercial real estate projects in Arizona.
Plaza Companies is successfully competitive in the commercial real estate space while remaining compliant with all accessibility needs as a top priority along with all other legal obligations. Our firm specializes in staying connected and conscientious of all emerging trends and laws.
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