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SANGO RONKE HOLISTIC REFUGE Holistic Lifestyle Retirement Driven by an Agenda to Sustain a Youthful, Fulfilling, and Free Life

Living well and beautifully and justly are all one. - Socrates



ACKNOWLEDGMENTS………………………………………………………………………3 DEDICATION..............................................................................................................................4 PREFACE.....................................................................................................................................5

INTRODUCTION: THE IDEA…………………………………………………………......


A New Look at Retirement: Focus Group: The Baby Boomers A Brief Background of Active Adult Communities METHODOLOGY…………………………………………………………………………..


THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK…………………………………………………………


Who Are the Baby Boomers? What Do the Baby Boomer Think About Retirement? Holistic living and the Baby Boomers Jeffersonville, Indiana OBJECTIVES ……………………………………………………………………………….. 21 PART 1………………………………………………………………………………………... 22 The Psychology of Retirement Conclusions PART 2………………………………………………………………………………………... 26 Case Studies Programmatic Current Retirement and Their Success The Village at Sun City Anthem: A Del Webb Active Adult Community The ‘Green Houses’: Mississippi Methodist Senior Services Parkview Terrace: Affordable Senior Housing with a Hip New Look

2 GL Home Community in Valencia Florida Conclusions PART 2.1…………………………………………………………………………………… 40 Case Studies Form and Organization Holistic Architecture Gathering Spirit: A Spiritual Retreat Vesica House Loblolly House Conclusions PART 3……………………………………………………………………………………… 52 THE PROPOSAL Vision Statement Program of Spaces Site Analysis

LIST OF FIGURES……………………………………………………………………….. 62

BIBLIOGRAPHY………………………………………………………………………… 66 FURTHER READINGS…………………………………………………………………… 69 APPENDIX…………………………………………………………………………………. 70


Acknowledgments I like to first acknowledge my Aunt Angela for blessing me with such a wonderful idea in which to elaborate upon. If it weren’t for your thoughts I may have been designing a garbage dump. I also acknowledge and sincerely thank Dr. Ahmed Elnaggar, for his profound incite and thorough direction. It was a tough journey but in the end it all came together and made perfect sense (Thank God : ). Thank you.


Dedication This will be a rather long dedication, but to all who know me it is no a surprise. I dedicate this thesis first to my mother, because if she ever reads this, she would raise hell to earth if she finds that she was not formally acknowledged in my dedication. I know that every accomplishment I make, is an even greater accomplishment for you. To my father, ‘I love you daddy’, I know even though you can no longer physically be here with me, you have never once left my heart. Last but far from least, to my family, my son, my loving, supporting fiancé, and all of the people that saw my potential and never stopped pushing for my success. Many of you have done more than break your back, to help me for what ever I asked, and many of you (but not all, you know who you are) didn’t even complain or question me. I don’t see how I could have made it this far without you and look forward to keeping you with me for the rest of my journey to the top. I love you all very dearly.



Sango Ronke is the name given to a Yoruba woman that is very dear and near to me. She serves as a great inspiration to me in the creation of this project. Sango is the most popular Orisha in the Yoruba culture. He is the Deity of thunder and lightning, and was a royal ancestor of the Yoruba people. The energy given from Sango is also a major symbol of African resistance against an enslaving European culture. He rules the color red and white. He represents creativity, justice, strength and passion. Ronke is a Yuroba name that means, found someone to cherish or care for. Sango Ronke can be translated as, Sango takes care of me and I take care of Sango


Holistic- relating to or concerned with wholes or with complete systems rather than with the analysis of, treatment of, or dissection into parts ( holistic medicine attempt to treat both the mind and the body) ( holistic ecology views humans and the environment as a single system)(Definition from Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

I start off by explaining holistic by definition because upon introducing the subject of holistic, it at first seems to be a broad and complex subject. Though on the contrary holistic is essentially as complex as its definition.

Holistic relates to holism which a metaphysical understanding that the universe and all its living organisms are interacting parts of a whole. After understanding holism, we come to know “the world is one, not that the spiritual, the material, the mental, and the world of energies are

6 separate. It is all one, but seen from different planes of vision. Whatever is, is one. Let us say, it is a sort of tapering existence; the thickest part is here, it tapers and becomes finer and finer. The finest is what we call spirit; the grossest, the body.” (Swami Vivekananda)1

Holistic approaches to life inform “the ways we give birth, prepare and store food, heal, process information, build shelter, create communities and ultimately die.” (Rice)2 Holistic lifestyle practices include: Holistic medicine and healing, yoga, breath therapy, rebirthing, Tibetan rites, tai’ chi’, earth dances, dynamic meditations, healing and creative visualizations, harmony with oneself, home and family. The list is endless but these are a few of the most popular lifestyle practices that are currently widely publicized. Many holistic living practices are very spirit based and many of the practices are inspired by eastern cultures.

The plane of holistic taken into account in this particular project mainly focuses on natural health, spiritual arts, and sustainable living. This is a response to current retirement communities and living facilities that do not deal with retirement holistically as a new mental, spiritual, and physical journey.


After researching holistic architecture I discovered that many architects and designers have taken a number of different approaches to accomplish a building that essentially exemplifies holistic design. Through the use of sacred geometry and various aspects of sustainable design, all of them having some connection to the architecture of our ancestors (vernacular design), the projects of the designers and architects that I have studied all had successful projects in the


Mind and Thought of Human Being and Holistic Living. article by Shri. Gambhir Watts

<> 2

Rice, Michael. “Holistic/ Biological Architecture”. <>

7 aspects that they set out to accomplish. As mentioned before there are so many planes of vision when dealing with life holistically, the same goes for holistic architecture.

Holistic Architecture is very different from contemporary architecture. Contemporary architecture is closely linked to premeditated aesthetics and rational which dissociates itself from reacting to human emotions and human welfare. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s an architecture that creates autonomous fragments that function separate from each other. Holistic architecture, on the other hand, is an attempt to connect people physically, spiritually, and emotionally to their physical environment, all elements work together as a whole. To practice holistic architecture is to understand that man is a part of nature not superior to her.

Of all of the different approaches that I studied Nili Portugali was the one that I understood and agreed with the most, in fact I completely agreed with his approach. In my opinion he exemplifies and practices holistic architecture with a holistic understanding and a holistic approach. He sees and understands architecture as a human environment for human beings.3

â&#x20AC;&#x153;I do not regard urban design, architecture, interior design and landscape design as independent disciplines removed from each other, but as one continuous and dynamic system. Thus the building is not perceived as a collection of designated fragments, but as one hierarchical language, in which every design detail, on any level of space, is derived from the larger whole to which it belongs. Which it seeks to enhance, and for whose existence it is responsible. The overall feeling of inner wholeness and unity in a building thus stems from the proper interrelations among its parts.â&#x20AC;? (Portugali p. 24)


See introduction of Portugali, Nili. The Act of Creation and the Spirit of a Place: A HolisticPhenomenological Approach to Architecture. London: Axel Menges, 2006




In contemplating a topic in which to focus my thesis studies on, I wanted to develop a project that would be dynamic for the American community and culture. After some thought on the subject, it was not until I had a conversation with my aunt that the idea for my thesis dawned on me. “….You know, the greatest years of your life are going to be the ones that you spend working hard to get to where you want to be. After you have struggled to the top and accomplished your biggest dreams, its just not as much fun any more…” What happens after that? It is the American way to work hard all of your life so that you can accomplish all of these things, but in the end, you feel inconclusive. This is what peaked my interest in retirement and life after retirement.

Retirement has never really been considered as a major societal issue, or understood as a community concern. Many of the retirement solutions that I have presently encountered are like topical cream treatments for retirement. This particular subject is important to the American society because of the oncoming ‘age wave’ of one of America’s biggest generations; the baby boomers. Due to this oncoming surge of retirees, retirement is becoming a new focus of investigation. The baby boomers are a very interesting breed of Americans. They single handedly redefined and reshaped American ideals. The baby boomers are very different from thier parents and will require a more well thought out and innovative approach to retirement.


After retirement, the most common place people go, other than staying at home, is Active Adult Retirement Communities (AARC). AARCs are relatively new to the United States. Starting in 1960, the nation’s first large scale AARC was opened by Del Webb, in Sun City, Arizona. Del Webb is still one of the biggest names in the AARC market today. Forty years from their beginnings AARCs are still a hot commodity amongst retired people. Active adult communities serve as idyllic communities for retirees. They are life style based communities that cater to a specific type of age group, demographic and arguably race and culture also.

The retirees who patronized the 1960’s AARCs, where mostly members of the GI generation (1901-1927) and possibly some from the lost generation (1883-1900). They were the children of the WWI generation and successful veterans of WWII. They were very young during the great depression. Characteristics of the G.I. generation are; 4 §

they were strong models of teamwork who overcome and progress,


they were society driven,


strongly interested in personal morality,


had near-absolute standards of right and wrong,


they had a strong sense of personal civic duty,


they believed marriage is for life,


they had strong loyalty to jobs, groups, schools, etc.,


were the labor-union-spawning generation.

The credo for the G.I. generation was “use it up, fix it up, make it up, or do without”; avoid debt…save and buy with cash. They were also born in the age of radio and air flight.

The communities created for this generation reflected their values and beliefs. These places were ‘idyllic havens’, with pristine landscaping, orderly homes, and white picket


Characteristics are from Wikipedia the online encyclopedia. Subject: G.I. generation

10 fences. For the time and the retirees that were served in the 1960’s, active adult communities were appropriately thought out and planned for that particular generation of Americans.

“Retirement enclaves served as forerunners in the proliferation of master-planned, lifestyle communities that engender both resident well-being and social fragmentation in Metropolitan America.”(McHugh and Keagy)5

Yet, in much contrast to their proceeded generation, the baby boomers generation is not like the G.I. generation. They have different life experiences, different values, and different beliefs.


Quote from the abstract of McHugh, Kevin E. and Larson-Keagy, Elizabeth M. “These White Walls: The

Dialectic of Retirement Communities.” Science Direct. 12 May 2008.


Over the past decade there has been more and more interest in the baby boomers and their retirement. Much research and many studies are available to anyone who is interested in venturing into the life of the baby boomers and their retirement.

This project pieces together a variety of issues and subjects including holistic living and architecture, the baby boomers retirement, Active adult communities and nursing homes and the cultural and societal issues of America. By showing where holistic architecture, active adult communities, and holistic living over lapin ideals and theory, I plan to build a case for a proposal for a new theory of retirement. In researching for this project I have sought out to find those over lapping areas to put together a new type of community that caters to the baby boomers. The goal is to show how all of these aspects are directly related to the baby boomers and their retirement and in the end devise an appropriate program for the proposed baby boomer retirement facility.

First it is important to understand the baby boomers and their needs and values and how they feel about retirement. I will also show through research how the baby boomers are linked and suitable for a holistic life style.

Through case studies on active adult communities and their successes and nursing homes with successful fulfilling programs, I plan to convey a better understanding of current retirement and their positive aspects. I will also use them as examples of space programming and ideologies in with to base the project upon.

12 Furthermore, after a basic understanding of current retirement facilities is understood, case studies on holistic architecture will be used to get a better understanding of holistic design and living, giving an idea to base further design exploration on.



The idea for this project is to create a community for the baby boomer retirees, which caters to their unique needs and values, and furthermore improves upon the ideals of current retirement communities. Some of the issues that retirees must deal with are: health issues, legal issues, relationship issues, how to make a productive use of time, apprehensions and fears, issues in and about aging, life purpose issues, life balance, relocation issues, housing issues, and safety issues. These are only a handful of the issues that will be face in and upon approaching retirement.6 Current retirement communities and facilities only resolve a few of these issues.

Due to the excess of unresolved issues relating to retirement, I am taking a more holistic approach towards dealing with retirement. Retirement is generally dealt with as a financial issue, leaving the holistic lifestyle needs largely overlooked. Many current retirees are now battling with the overlooked psychological and emotional issues that have arisen since retiring. There are many benefits to a holistic retirement, which I will further elaborate upon as we continue.

In order to begin this investigation, it is important to understand a few key aspects:


Who are the baby boomers and what are their defining life experiences?

What are their values?

What are their thoughts of retirement?

What are the issues of current communities and facilities?

Will the boomers be open to a holistic lifestyle?

Where would the first development be and why?

List acquired from On purpose partners Retirement Coaching for ‘Third Age Boomers’ <>



The Baby Boomers is the term used for all persons born during the post-world war II baby boom ( an unusual spike in birth rates) between 1946 and 1964. Over sixty-seven million children were born at that time. The boomers can be separated into two cohorts: cohort #1 persons born between 1946 and 1954, and cohort #2 persons born between 1955 and 1964. The boomers used for this particular project are from cohort #1.

Wikipedia characterizes the baby boomers as a generation that had higher education than previous generations, and aspired towards lifelong prosperity and entitlement. They were the first generation raised with television, this is important because children all over the united states no matter where they were, were watching the same shows about American family ideals and values. They also watched the Vietnam War and the assassinations of J.F.K., M.L.K. Jr., and R.F.K. Television alone gave the baby boomers the greatest sense of generational identity that America had ever seen before.7

The baby boomers are the initiators of a new liberal age of America. Many defining factors shaped the lives of baby boomers. In a 1985 study done by Schuman and Scott,8 a wide range of baby boomers were asked “What world events over the past fifty years were especially important to you?” the result of this study were as follows: - Memorable events: Assassination of JFK, RFK, and MLK Jr., political unrest, walk on the moon, Vietnam War, anti-war protests, social experimentation, sexual freedom, civil rights movement, environmental movement, protests and riots, experimentation with various intoxicating recreational substances. -Key characteristics: experimental, individualism, free spirited, social cause oriented


Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. “Baby Boomer”. last modified on 13 Nov. 2008, at 02:15.

<> 8

Schuman, H. and Scott, J. (1989), Generations and collective memories, American Psychological Review, vol. 54, 1989, pp. 359-81.

15 According to ……. Forty-two percent of baby boomers were dropouts from formal religion; one-third never strayed from the church and one-quarter later returned to religious practice. The reformed boomers were “usually less tied to tradition and less dependable as church members than the loyalists. They are also more liberal, which deepens rifts over issues like abortion and homosexuality.”9 The biggest contribution of the baby boomer generation is expansion of individual freedom and support for civil rights.

Known as the generation that will never die or age, youth was idealized by this generation. They took full advantage of their youthful years and became the highest median household incomes in the U.S. up to date. Yet, baby boomers are in a state of denial regarding their own aging and death. They want to look and feel better and be active and useful for as long as possible.

WHAT DO THE BOOMERS THINK ABOUT THEIR RETIREMENT? According to the ‘New Retirement Survey’10baby boomers are most likely to work during retirement and alternate between work and leisure. The most common choices of what they would do during retirement among baby boomers in the survey would be to: •

Repeatedly “cycle” between periods of work and leisure (42%)

Have part time work (16%)

Start their own business (13%)

Work full time (6%)

And not work at all or not for pay (17%)

Due to the fact that the boomers are expected to work during or even through current retirement age, and also due to current medical practices, live longer, current financial assumptions for retirement will be impractical for the baby boomers.


Ostling, Richard N., "The Church Search", 5 April 1993 Time article retrieved 2007-01-27 The New Retirement Survey administered on people from the baby boomer generation by Merril Lynch


16 The boomers are not psychologically prepared for retiring. They are filled with apprehensions and quite frankly lost in the ideals of retirement. Noted from the survey previously mentioned, 67% of baby boomer asserts that continued mental stimulation is the main motivation of wanting to ‘stay in the game’. Many of them do not know what else is out there after retirement from their job, there is a loss of identity that occurs.

The boomers being famous for their love and clutch on youth, loath the idea of current retirement ideals. They want to see themselves as involved, engaged, energetic, and very active in life and society throughout their retirement. Baby boomers can be grouped into five categories:11 Trail blazers, wealth-builders, leisure lifers, anxious idealists, and the stressed and stretched. Retirement developments for the boomer should facilitate all of there needs and values no matter what category they fit into.

Lifestyle communities are idyllic havens for the groups that they cater to. What makes them successful are the shared value base between the community residents and the facility provided. The baby boomer values are derived from their coming of age life experiences. It is important that the development provides, conveys, and shares those same values.


Due to advances in medicine boomers will be spending about a third of their like in retirement.12 That’s almost thirty years. Since the boomers are such a large group and will be living longer, they will be the largest group of older citizens in history, (see figure 1.) making old age a mass phenomenon.


As described by Sharon O’Brien in article. How Baby Boomers will Change Retirment Part 1: Many Baby Boomers Plan to Mix Work and Play <> 12 On purpose partners Retirement Coaching for ‘Third Age Boomers’ <>


Figure 1: Chart of population change in the number of older adultsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; from1990-2010.

The boomers will bring about a movement that will require new services that support whole development into the golden years. According to Aviv Shahar13, in an article on Goliath, the confluence of demographic shift with various medical and holistic trends and breakthroughs may change what it means- and how it feels-to be â&#x20AC;&#x153;oldâ&#x20AC;?. A few of these breakthroughs will filter through to the mainstream as: new understanding about the functionality of the aging brain, mind enliveners, and the importance of physical, emotional, and societal activities, and new developments in mind-body connection will bring greater acceptance and authority to alternative and holistic methodologies. These advancements in thinking teamed with the baby booms strive to stay active in society, may lead to new models of multi-generational communities, where seniors will get involved, interact, and assist with societal needs, including early childhood development.

With their vast numbers the baby boomer will bring new and dignified view of the golden age experience bringing with it a dynamic cultural metamorphosis.


Shahar, Aviv. The Holistic Future of Aging: Baby Boomers Will Put a New, Active, Empowered Face on Aging.(Society) Sept-Oct 2003 <http://goliath.ecnext,com

18 JEFFERSONVILLE, INDIANA According to Diane Suchman,14 people that retire and move to lifestyle communities, prefer to move within easy driving distance of their long time homes. There is a lack of AARCs in the midland areas of the U.S. There are only 27% of AARCs located outside of the sunbelt and only a little over 2% of those are located in the area around Indiana. (See figure 2)

Figure 2: Summary of data from the National Directory of Lifestyles Communities

AARCs have positive influences on the economies that they are in, plus they due to hey ratios of senior involvement in politics they will have a stronger political voice. They also benefit the communities that they are placed in because they do not add children to the school system with is on of the biggest tax burdens that cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s care, older people drive less which means that 14

Suchman, Diane R. Developing Active Adult Communities. Washington D.C.: Urban Land Institute, 2001

19 they are less of a burden on local roads and there will be less traffic congestion. This is also a plus because it would call for better public transportation in a city the really needs it. The center for business research shows how Pebbles Peek, an AARC near Phoenix Arizona, had positive effects on the economy. (See figure 3)

Figure 3: Pebble Creekâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Impacts and Contributions to the Local Economy

The Ideals of holistic living appeals to many different types of people, from different cultural, and economic backgrounds. It would also bring in new jobs, in new and innovative fields, a new market, and cultural diversity of a not so diverse community. Based on the demographic information (See figure 4), Jeffersonville is not very culturally diverse. I propose to

20 use this project as a catalyst to bring a new dynamic of cultural diversity to the area, and also as a catalyst to promote a different set values and demographic in active adult communities in general.

Figure 4: Jeffersonville City, Indiana Statistics and Demographics


Create an active community that promotes intergenerational involvement

Create a lively environment

Enlighten and promote to the community about holistic living

Break the stigma of a single demographic status community

Set an example for holistic health, medicine, life style practices, and environmental awareness

Timeless innovative design that is a stunning example of holistic architecture

Place of refuge from everyday stresses a 4 seasons resort like atmosphere

Create social justice

Provide a place for creativity

Provide facilities that help smooth along the transition into retirement

Promote a new holistic way of society living

To cater to a broader demographic particularly minorities and lower classes

To promote cultural diversification

Provide a facility that deals with physical/health, family/community, financial, spiritual, social, intellectual, and work.




Retirement has long been linked with aging which leads one to consider the reactions to retirement to be age specific. This philosophy means that when you retire you have acknowledged that you have become old, therefore you acquire the characteristicâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s that you have learned to associate with old people. According to Jules Z. Willing author of the book The Reality of Retirement15, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Aging is innate and inevitable, retirement is neither.â&#x20AC;? Retirement and aging are two separate social transitions and they should be treated and understood as different experiences. Retirement is a transitional state that generally takes one to two years to properly settle into.

One aspect that was constantly over-looked in early retirement design was the psychological effect that retirement has on the individual. Many designs were based on the theory of what happens to people when they retire rather than responding to what happens within them. In other words, retirement facilities are filled with amenities and treated as places for life long leisure and vacation rather than a place to bring about a healthy transition from one major stage of life to another.

Something that I thought was interesting about retirement was what people think about their own retirement and what happens to them when they retire. Most people think of retirement 15

Quote from page 5, Willing, Jules Z. The Reality of Retirement: The Inner Experience of Becoming a Retired Person. New York: William Morrow, 1981

23 as a short term happening. They go into retirement with excitement about having more “time”. More time for what? More time to be able to sleep late, more time to do nothing and relax, more time to travel, or even more time to get around to doing the things that you did not have time for before. Most of these activities are very unsatisfying and lead to an unfulfilling retirement. What initially seems like the rewards of retirement to a hard working CEO, will soon be the things most dreaded by a retiree. “part of the revelation of retirement is that many of our yearnings are of things we really didn’t want, that we have been nourishing ourselves on spurious notions of what we are capable of if only we were not hindered by the need to earn a living, and we discover late in life that we created our own myths.”16

To be a successfully retired American the operative word in being retired is activity, rather than leisure. Retirement is more a matter of job replacement than pleasure. There will be a need to fill the unsatisfying void of not working. Choosing the right activities to fill this void is important. It is not enough to choose activities that keep your mind off things, by choosing meaningful activities that keep your mind on things, one will begin to fill more fulfilled. Useful social involvement is essential to making an activity meaningful.

One common theme that you will hear from retirees is freedom, which retirement is freedom. Freedom should not be confused with leisure. I.E. retirement = freedom = leisure = play, but rather retirement = freedom = release of formally employed energy = action in a new direction17. Retirement is the time to find your true meaning in life, it is definitely not a time to stop growing. Successful retirement comes from a changed sense of self generated by what you have chosen to do with your new freed energies. Two elements needed to in activity in order for it to nourish the psyche are identity and function. Studies have shown that it is not good health makes people feel more content but that felling more content about life may be physically


Quote from pg 14, Willing, Jules Z. The Reality of Retirement: The Inner Experience of Becoming a Retired

Person. New York: William Morrow, 1981 17

Equation from page 32 of, Willing, Jules Z. The Reality of Retirement: The Inner Experience of Becoming a

Retired Person. New York: William Morrow, 1981

24 beneficial. According to Dr. Diener as stated in a Time Magazine article18, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Being more satisfied with life, and so being in positive moods more often, seems to be good for your health.â&#x20AC;? In designing a place for retired people it is important to create a social structure for the residents that promote a sense of community and camaraderie.


Ed Diener, PhD. Time Magazine (Issue with multiple articles on happiness and well-being), January 17, 2005.


Now after putting things into focus and understanding retirement philosophically, it is necessary to put all of these elements into context in regards to solving these retirement issues through built form design. Through my research I have found three common problem areas that are related with retirement, they are: the initial shock and unexpected emotional reactions to retirement, the feeling of displacement and the need to find a satisfying alternative activity, and the need for a sensibly planned transition from one phase of life to another very different one. Through case studies and theories formed though extensive research, I plan to address these issues and possibly eliminate them.

In learning of the emotional and psychological strains that are brought on by retirement, I have concluded that it will be necessary to incorporate a new type of learning facility within the development which is dedicated to the healthy mental transition to retirement. There is a catch though; what will attract retirees to this facility? Will they feel it is some type of mental help place? I want it to be a place that you can go, that will help you feel fulfilled about who you are and where you are in life. Self-liking and self-respect are fundamental for the internal strength needed to have healthy relationships, and a healthy retirement. As stated before being able to build new relationships is important to regaining or maintaining a place in the social network. It is important to have a place for â&#x20AC;&#x153;support groupâ&#x20AC;? (I use that term very loosely) meetings. A place where people can go to learn more about themselves, a place for reformation. I say a place for reformation because it is crucial to break free from titles and statuses which we generally use to define ourselves and just be people and happy with the people we are. Only then can trust rather than fear of rejection develop, and healthy relationship will be free to develop and self-liking and self-confidence can grow. Retirement is by no means a time to stop growing and this development will promote growth.




The Village at Sun City Anthem: The Del Webb Active Adult Community

In 1960 Del Webb launch the nations first large-scale active adult community in Sun City, Arizona. The community was established under the methodology that retirement enclaves served as forerunners in lifestyle communities that addressed both the residents’ well-being and the social fragmentation found in America’s metropolitan communities. Sun City was developed under the principles of activity, economy and individuality. It was one of the first developments in its kind to promote active retirement. The community explores the meaning of social significant of retirement havens by organizing it into three tropes: birds of a feather, idyllic havens, and fortress mentality. 19

The Valley of the Sun is located on the periphery of the Phoenix metropolitan area along with many other retirement enclaves. Developers do this to eliminate costly sites and to also promote idyllic havens removed from city crime, congestion, and other urban ills, yet still have access to the city amenities. The Valley of the Sun is master-planned in such a way that even


The three elements in which made sun city so successful found in, McHugh, Kevin E. and Larson-Keagy,

Elizabeth M. “These White Walls: The Dialectic of Retirement Communities.” Science Direct. 12 May 2008.

27 though it is not legally age-restricted, it caters to empty nesters and retirees so it serves as a de facto retirement setting.

Midwesterners are attracted to this community do to colder climates but they also have long ties to Arizona, so Midwesterners were a big focus group when the project was being marketed. Many Sun Citians who relocate to Arizona remained tied to their home states, so there is cyclical mobility throughout the year with the residents (snow birds and sunbirds).

There has been controversy on the homogenous philosophy in which Sun City was developed. The demographics of the development are mostly middle to upper-middle class white couples. The overall feel of the community is very upscale with the pristine landscaping and maintained homes, and neighborhood committees governing the homogenous nature of the community. According to Laws (1995)20, “Sun City is a ‘plasticized’ place, a dreary world devoid of youth and spontaneity, an excessively planned and immaculate community where inhabitants are ‘free to follow the rules’.” Yet, the citizens of Sun City a pleased with the bird of a feather aspect of the community and they appreciate being around people of there own background. To them they are able to relate more to the people of their community and along with that is a strong since of camaraderie. “These statements speak to the role loss felt by the elderly in society, and retirement communities as places of affirmation and a sense of belonging.”21

There is another interesting notion of Sun City as an ‘idyllic haven’. This notion is very common among most successful retirement communities. These places have promoted ‘active retirement’ as a period of delayed gratification. This community is genuinely loved by its resident with a strong sense of pride in it appearance. Many residence use the phrase “half way to heaven” the they describe the place. Sun city promoted a great sense of well being in older age, great climate, active lifestyle, low crime rates, civility, and social support among may other positive attributes of the community. 20

Laws, 1995 G. Laws, Embodiment and emplacement: Identities, representation and landscape in Sun City retirement communities, International Journal of Aging and Human Development 40 (1995), pp. 253–280 21 Quote taken from article, McHugh, Kevin E. and Larson-Keagy, Elizabeth M. “These White Walls: The Dialectic of Retirement Communities.” Science Direct. 12 May 2008.


Sun City is very successful as a community. It is a good physical definition of the value based community. According to Blakely and Snyder (1999 p.33) community is a value laden term which “ offers a useful organizing frame the highlights five elements: shared territory, shared values, shared public realm, shared support structures, and shared destiny.”

The ‘Green Houses’: Mississippi Methodist Services

Figure 5: Green House Designed by the McCarty Company- Design Group P.A.

As an attempt to improve the quality of life in traditional nursing homes, William Thomas, M.D., created home like modular ‘Green Houses’ to replace the institutional prototypical living facilities. This experiment accomplished more than its initially set objectives of improving the quality of life for the residents and also, significantly decreasing loneliness, helplessness, and boredom.22 22

March, Ph.D., Artemis. “Case Study: Elderly Homes Replace Nursing Homes in Tupelo, Miss.” The Common Wealth Fund. 12 Mar. 2007. <>.


The first Green Houses where built on the Mississippi Senior Services’ flagship campus in Tupelo, Mississippi. Thomas, who is also the founder of Eden Alternative, ‘an organization that seeks to transform assisted-living facilities into “vibrant centers of care and companionship”23,’ teamed up with architect, Richard McCarty of The McCarty Company-Design Group P.A., to bring his dream to life.

According to March, there were three key dimensions that the Green Houses have that make the homes so successful in proving a non-institutional feeling. Those dimensions are as follows:


A physical environment composed of small, technologically smart houses that function as people’s homes rather than facilities where they come to die. Private rooms with private bathrooms are clustered around a central area with a shared kitchen, dining room and living room. The homes will have medical technologies, but few medical “sign-posts”.


An organization in which the elders, and newly certified nursing assistants (CNA’s) make daily decisions about their lives and care.


A shift in focus whereby necessary medical treatment- for which physicians and nurses retain responsibility and authority- is no linger the driver of the daily routines but is incorporated into the context of elders’ lives, much as happens in home care.24


Stated objective of project from March March, Ph.D., Artemis. “Case Study: Elderly Homes Replace Nursing

Homes in Tupelo, Miss.” The Common Wealth Fund. 12 Mar. 2007. <>. 24

March, Ph.D., Artemis. “Case Study: Elderly Homes Replace Nursing Homes in Tupelo, Miss.” The

Common Wealth Fund. 12 Mar. 2007. <>.

30 One of the main aspects that brought the Green House project so much success was not just the spatial design of the new facility, but it was the new training concepts used to train the CNAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s. The nurses were trained under a new concept call shahbazim which required the nurses to go through an additional 120 hours of training outside of their required federal training. The new training expanded upon the traditional responsibilities of a CNA and was implemented in order to â&#x20AC;&#x153;protect, sustain, and nurture the elders and foster relationships with and among the elders, so that people who live and work at the Green House would become a familyâ&#x20AC;?, some of there new responsibilities included cooking and light housekeeping.

The results for the Green Houses have showed vast improvements of the residents. Staff documentation shows that the elders are eating again, gaining weight, and are less reliant on their wheelchairs. Even visitation improved. Many families were discouraged to visit at the previous facility due to the institutional setting.

31 Park View Terraces: Affordable Housing with a Hip New Look

Figure 6: Parkview Terrace view from busy corner

Architects from the firms Kwan Henmi Architecture/Planning and Fougeron Architecture joined together to design a new affordable housing complex with a hip modern look in San Francisco. They viewed the projects residences as “people looking to the future rather than the past”. 25

The Parkview Terraces project sets in the city’s Cathedral Heights neighborhood, and looks onto a block-long park to the northwest and a matching playground due west.


Quote from Henmi in article, Pearson, Clifford A. “Kwan Henmi and Anne Fougeron give senior housing a

hip new look at Parkview Terraces”. Architectural Record. Oct. 2008


Figure 7: South facing terraces

There were a number of challenges that had to be faced in making Parkview Terraces an affordable housing project. Many of those challenges came from funding and accommodation of space or lack of space. Due to a tight budget for the project the architects were required to fit 100 units into the tight constraints of the nine stories that they could afford to build. To further complicate the situation the entire first floor was dedicated to common community spaces and a hair salon, leaving only eight floors for residential spaces.

Figure 8: Ground and forth floor plans

33 1.

Volunteer services


Beauty Salon




Managerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s office


Community room


Catering Kitchen








Social Services


One bedroom unit


Studio apartment


Community library

Figure 9: Double ceiling height community space on ground floor

Yet the architects were able to work this project and they actually managed to fit 101 units into the building. Those units consist of studios and one bedroom units, ranging from 400 to 690 square feet with ceiling heights of 7 to 8 feet. By using floor to ceiling windows and open floor plans the architect was able to make the units feel more spacious than they actually were.


Figure 10: Typ. Kitchen with floor to ceiling height windows to make the small units feel larger

Forty-seven of the units are designed to be wheel-chair accessible. Rent rages from $810 to $725 for one bedrooms and $561 to $598 for studios, depending on the residents’ income. There are also federal government public housing programs that work jointly with the project to provide rent subsidies. This project is a good example of how good design can be used in community projects. 26


Pearson, Clifford A. “Kwan Henmi and Anne Fougeron give senior housing a hip new look at Parkview Terraces”. Architectural Record. Oct. 2008


GL Homes Active Adult Community: Valencia, Florida

Valencia Point is an active adult community located in Boynton Beach, Florida. GL Homes is Florida’s premier active adult community developer. These developments are upscale and amenity rich. The typical layout of these communities normally include a clubhouse where the community meets and where extra curricular activities are carried out.

Figure 11: Site plan of the community Orange=Signature and Regency collection Yellow = Crown collection

The residences for the Valencia Point development consist of 2 to 4 bedroom single-family homes which are very spacious and range in price from $309,900 to $617,900.27 The homes are 27

cost information gathered from G.L. homes website, G.L. Homes. “Valencia Pointe- Florida’s Premier Active

Adult and Homebuilder”. © 2007-2008 <>

36 divided into categories of the Regency, Signature and Crown collections, Crown collections being the most expensive homes.

Figure 10: The Regency Collection (generally 2 bedroom, 2 bath, 2 car garage from $309,900-$399,000)

Figure 12: The Signature Collection ( 2-3 bedrooms, 2-2.5 baths, den, screened patio, 2 car garage from $399,900-$537,000)

Figure 13: The Crown Collection (2-4 bedrooms, 2.5-3 baths, den, screened patio, 2-3 car garage from $557,900-$617,900)

37 The clubhouse and recreation areas contain and include a fitness center, grand ballroom, internet cafĂŠ, resistance pool, basketball, tennis and more. The amenities of this development also offer a full-time Lifestyle Director is on-site, and over 100 social clubs, community activities.

Figure 14: Aerial view of Valencia Pointe Club House Figure 15: Night view of Club House Figure 16: Club House plan Figure 17: Club House site plan


I chose the previous examples of current retirement facilities from a broad scope of facilities so that there is an understanding of the various issues that need to be taken into consideration when designing a community for older adults. Based on the studies above, some of the issues conveys where, housing affordability, space layout and orientation, mental wellness, and provided care, and ideals.

In the Del Webb community I agree with the ‘idyllic haven’ notion of the community. I have noticed that in many AARC’s, and have come to realize that in order to have a really successful community the must be a common set of values and ideals. Even the notion of ‘bird of a feather’ make sense, though I am very hesitant on totally agreeing because it seems that the type of mind set would curve the demographic to be too bias to one side. Yet, for the baby boomers, I don’t see that as being concerns based on the fact the they are exposed to more culture and are more open than their parent were. I do stongly disagree with the notion of a ‘fortress mentality’ It creates a statue stigma that I want to avoid.

The ‘Green houses’ are the best example of an assisted living facility that I have come across during my research. It is renown for its success and I do plan to emulate the ideals of this particular development, based on spaces, spaces that may be needed to better accommodate this type of living and interactions, and the practice of relationships between residents and the CNAs under the practices of shabazim.

The reason for choosing the Parkview terrace apartments was because I felt that this particular project cam the closest to creating a more baby boomer directed retirement. It was hip, active, and upbeat. It is one of the best examples of the baby boomer retirement that are currently out now.

39 The idea of the clubhouse is a static element that can be found in almost all AARCs. It is obviously important. With the community that I plan to design, I want to elaborate on the activities of the area and create other secondary activity hubs throughout the community.




Gathering Spirit: A Spiritual Retreat Gathering spirit is a spiritual retreat, designed to inhabit the forest, the sea, or both. “The forest is a dense, incredibly lush mix of moss-festooned mature second growth. It's foreboding, shadowy energy tends to resist building, forcing development towards the light and air along the rugged shores. The sea is equally wild, often shrouded in mist or swept with a chill wind.”28

Figure 18: Views towards site 28

Quote by Michael Rice from his website, Rice, Michael. “Holistic/ Biological Architecture”. <>

41 One of main challenges that the architect mentions was the complexity of incorporating a complex program of building and activity on a relatively small site. The steep, rocky terrain of the site also posed design issues. The projects program includes: •

a residence for multiple guests

a new house for the retreat owners

an ashram (for exercise, courses, meditation and rituals)

a power house (to supply to the energy required for the site)

a breakwater as a staging platform and to protect from stormy seas

a heavy equipment workshop

a picnic/barbeque area

and an extended dock suitable for float planes and large boats The site plan of this project is organized by the geometry of golden rectangles and golden

spirals. The architects used major rock outcrops, slopes, sun and view angles, areas of vegetation and the existing edge conditions of tree lines and shorelines as guides to achieve the optimal placement and orientation of the overlaying geometry systems. These site specific geometries resulted in a clear and natural visual and spatial relation, and hierarchy of form between the various site improvements.


Figure 19: Site Plan with Sacred Geometry

To reduce the amount of new material introduced to the site and give the project a stronger relationship to the environment of the site, stone materials used for construction was the same stone that was excavated from the site. “The seawall acts as a buffer to the wild ocean, a staging place for arrivals and departures, and a comfortable seaside promenade.”29 “At one end of it is the guest villa, at the other a boat building shop. The roof of the shop accommodates a spacious deck overlooking the straits. There's also a greenhouse where the residents can augment their cuisine with fresh herbs, and seasonal fruit and vegetables. An electric funiculars (elevating platform on tracks) leads from the seawall up a steep incline to where the owners' residence, the picnic terrace and ashram are found. Most of the power on the 29

Quote by Michael Rice from his website, Rice, Michael. “Holistic/ Biological Architecture”. <>

43 site is generated naturally by harnessing the fall of a mountain stream. After lending its energy to the powerhouse's turbine, the runoff water cascades down a series of steps into the ocean.” 30

Figure 20: 3-D model view from water


Quote by Michael Rice from his website, Rice, Michael. “Holistic/ Biological Architecture”. <>

44 Vesica House

Figure 21: Model view from upper northwest

Located on the same site as Gathering Spirit, Vesica house is the owners residence of the project. “The overall composition is based on the precise merging of two cylindrical forms, each capped with a hemisphere. The two resulting domed cylinders create a vesica pisces at their intersection. The vesica is an ancient sign that celebrates female aspects and the divine gift of water. The house benefits from the wisdom of the ages by incorporating vedic principles of building, that generally define the house into five zones, water to the northeast, earth to the northwest, fire to the southeast, wind to the southwest, and a full height shaft of daylight, or brahmastan, in the centre.”31


Quote by Michael Rice from his website, Rice, Michael. “Holistic/ Biological Architecture”. <>


Figure 22: Model view from upper southeast

“You enter the home from the east at the point of intersection of the domes. Stepping through the threshold reveals the first of many surprises as a lovely water fountain playfully marks your arrival. The fountain is naturally lit from above by an opening right through the second floor to an amazing curved skylight. The skylight is shaped to exactly trace the magic vesica. The same geometry is echoed in an intricate mosaic floor pattern that surrounds the central fountain.”32


Quote by Michael Rice from his website, Rice, Michael. “Holistic/ Biological Architecture”. <>


Figure 23: Upper Floor Plan

Figure 24: Ground Floor Plan

“The space of the ground floor opens to the living room on the left, and the dining room on the right. Each of these rooms feature built-in shelves and cabinetry made from locally milled douglas fir. The warm orange-gold hue of the wood, and the way the built-in millwork curves to embrace the rooms adds to the prevailing feeling of comfort, luxury and security.”33


Quote by Michael Rice from his website, Rice, Michael. “Holistic/ Biological Architecture”. <>

47 Loblolly House

Figure 25: Loblolly House west elevation, evening

Kieran Timberlake Associates is an award-winning architecture firmed focused on integrating multiple strategies and perspectives into holistic design practices. Established in 1984 KTA are also the designers of Loblolly House, located in Taylors Island, Maryland. Built completely offsite and elevated on piles, the environmental impact of the house has been significantly minimized. 34 The Loblolly House includes the use of local materials completely produced and supplied within a 500 mile radius of the site. Other sustainable features include the integration of highperformance exterior walls, energy recovery systems, natural ventilation, extensive daylighting and the use of a green roof, all of which can be summed up in Kieran Timberlake Associates description of the “Elements” of architecture.


Lee, Evelyn. “PREFAB FRIDAYS: Kieran Timberlake Associates”. Inhabit. 24 Mar. 2006. <>


Figure 26: South elevation

The “Elements” Of Architecture: The idea of an “elemental” Architecture extends to the method of assembly. With a tight construction schedule and without access to skilled local labor, Loblolly House embraces the precision of off- site construction to enhance the elemental poetics of the site and provide the armature for spatial experience. Beyond the traditional pile platforms, prefabrication led to a reexamination of the traditional elements of Architecture and segmented construction typologies into integrated component assemblies. 1) SCAFFOLDING - Anodized aluminum structural components for linear motion assemblies. Each component fabricated off site has a bar code. This allows for precise erection in situ upon the locally driven pilings. 2) COFFERS- “Sandwiches” constructed offsite are prefabricated wood trusses clad in plywood sheets in alternating directions to resist shear. These simultaneously form the floors, ceilings, and roof. Within this 12• deep sandwich are integrated radiant floor heating, insulated micro ducts

49 for air conditioning, and wiring for power, lighting, and data. Each sandwich is 4 feet wide and lengths vary according to the floors and space. They are set upon the aluminum scaffold and bolted together. The top layers of plywood overlap to provide structural continuity.

Figure 27: Loblolly House floor plans

3) BOXES- Spatial units fabricated off site contain the most complex and intricate elements of the house: Kitchen Box - All cabinetry and fixtures are constructed as large furniture off site with integrated fixtures and systems, connected on site to waiting utility hookups in the lateral coffers. Bathroom/Closet Boxes - Floors, walls, ceilings, glazing, roofs, finishes, fixtures and drainage system, power and lighting are finished within the factory and lifted into place at waiting utility hook ups. Library - Floor, walls, ceilings, glazing, casework, built-in furniture and mechanical electrical systems completely fitted out off-site and lifted into position. The entire assembly from the platform up is scheduled to be completed in thirty days. 4) EXTERIOR SKIN - Transparent and Translucent panels- Off -the- shelf product employed within custom designed hinged and sliding assemblies. Constructed off site as multi level units

50 and attached to the structural frame. The units are placed 16â&#x20AC;˘ forward of a fully retractable double

Figure 28: Picture of the construction process Figure 29: East elevation detail


I find holistic architecture vey intriguing. There are so many different views on how I can be executed. The previous examples are projects that had more truth in the execution. There was a sedulity in the handling of the existing environment. Space planning and built placement was left up to the site to decide. There was harmony between the built structures and the environments which they reside in. There was no major excavation or lands clearing, these approaches are the ones that I chose as a directional bench mark in which to start my design explorations from.





Proposed site: Jeffersonville, IN 42130

Acreage: approximately 180 acres

Current condition of proposed site: Wooded area with trees and brush. Some existing building structures including small two-story single family homes.

“Sango Ronke will be a year round resort/retreat located in the city of Jeffersonville, in southern Indiana.”

This project will be an holistic living hub geared toward people of diverse demographic backgrounds. The development will not be age restricted but will cater to the ‘baby boomers’ ranging from ages of about 55-65+. Most importantly, the design must promote the feeling that all nationalities, ethnicities, genders, and religions are welcomed. This development is intended to attract people with an open mind ness towards alternative health and wellness modalities and lifestyle choices.

Sango Ronke Holistic Refuge will be a place designed for the discerning man or woman who seeks to live in peace and unity with oneself and their environment. It will be an idyllic setting for one to ‘actively’ enjoy the fruits of their labor. The central theme (holistic) of the

53 project is oneness of mind, body, and spirit on a journey of self-discovery and wondrous adventure which will be reflected throughout the premises through built design.

This should be a place full of life with a new discovery around every corner. It will be a holistic center for the city of Jeffersonville. People from all over the metropolitan areas will be able to come here for the unique holistic services and lifestyle. There will be a main central hub of activity (the clubhouse) where all of the activity hubs will be branched from and spread out throughout the community. All of the activity hubs will be for residents with a few of them that are offered for residents and non-residents alike. This network of activity hubs will provide a diverse activity realm for the community and the community in which it resides. There will need to be a divide between public and private or resident only use and non-resident use.


Single Family Homes -

two to four bedrooms and one to three bathrooms to accommodate single and couples


Feng Shui design


Open floor plans


Includes or has options of: den, dinging room, living room, half baths, furnished or not, personal zen garden


Model home buy to build


Sustainable holistic design (materials, orientation)

Water Feature -

To stretch through out the entire community


Can be used as a way finder, important focal points can be located along its path


Can have strong hierarchal relationship with the community as far as space/place importance

Club House -

Includes core activities, is the central hub of the community


Every activity on site will link to this central hub, all streams/creeks will lead here


Activities will include community centered spaces §

Out door pool


Ballroom with stage




Computer center


Business center with fax, copy etc….


Continued education university for staff and residence




Multipurpose rooms with space flexibility for awareness seminars and other functions and parties


Administrative offices for housing maintenance, rent, and resident concerns etc…

55 •

Will be the most active area on site

Holistic Spa -

Will be one of the onsite amenities that are offered to residents and non-residents


Will offer services of:





Message therapies




Life coaching


Raw bar


Diet modification programs


Detoxification etc…..

Will also include a salon/boutique that offers manicures, pedicures, hair salon, accessories, apparel etc…..

Labyrinth -

Will be in close proximity to spa for client and resident use


It a place for refocusing, mental cleansing, and meditation

Trails -

Will run throughout the community


May have themed trail options (i.e. butterfly trail, bird watchers trail, scenic, water creek etc….)


Trails will be differentiated walking, biking, and skating, they may run on the same path or separate


Trails will have bird watching gazebos with bird houses, butterfly bushes, additional seating, bbq pits etc.. located along them

Outdoor Amenities -

Will include golf course which will be in connection with club house and fitness center

Will be placed on cleared areas of the site

Court Games -

Will include basketball, tennis, squash etc….


Will be integrated with the fitness center

56 •

Fitness Center -

Will have: §

Indoor pool


Fitness studios for fitness equipment and classes like tai chi, yoga, aerobics, etc…

§ •

Indoor gym and squash courts

Public Attration -

May be a casino


Must be some thing that will bring more revenue to the local economy


Must be entertainment that residents and non-resident can come intermingle and enjoy alike

Market -

Possibly held weekly, maybe on weekends


Product will come from on site farming grounds, local farmers are invited


Will need to provide a space for the market and land for the farming grounds

Assisted Living accommodations -

These accommodations will be home-like setting


They will not be grouped together so that there is no ‘old people section’ stigma about the area


The staff will be trained under the shahbazim principles from the green houses


Homes for assisted living will look the same as the other homes with the exception of a slightly different floor plan with common areas to accommodate room mates


Figure 30: the site


The common home in Jeffersonville, Indiana

Figure 31: Pictures of typical existing house style


Figure 32: town and cities near Jeffersonville


Prospected Areas Served

Figure 33: areas within a three hour drive of the site

61 Climate conditions in Jeffersonville

Figure 34: average climate in Jeffersonville, Indiana


Theoretical Framework Figure 1: Chart of population change in the number of older adults’ from1990-2010 U.S. Bureau of the Census, Current Population Reports, P25-1130, “Population Projections by Age, Sex, Race, and Hispanic Origin: 1990 to 1994,” March 1995.

Figure 2: Summary of data from the National Directory of Lifestyles Communities the National Directory of Lifestyle Communities. ProMatura Group LLC. September 1999

Figure 3: Pebble Creek’s Impacts and Contributions to the Local Economy Prepared for Robson Communities by the Center for Business Research, L William Siedman Research Institute, College of Business, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, July 1998

Figure 4: Jeffersonville City, Indiana Statistics and Demographics (US Census 2000)

Programmatic: Case Studies: Green Houses Figure 5: Green House Designed by the McCarty Company- Design Group P.A. McCarty Company- Design Group P.A. <>

Programmatic: Case Studies: Parkview Terraces Figure 6: Parkview Terrace view from busy corner Pearson, Clifford A. “Kwan Henmi and Anne Fougeron give senior housing a hip new look at Parkview Terraces”. Architectural Record. Oct. 2008 (p.201)

Figure 7: South facing terraces Pearson, Clifford A. “Kwan Henmi and Anne Fougeron give senior housing a hip new look at Parkview Terraces”. Architectural Record. Oct. 2008 (p.202)

63 Figure 8: Ground and forth floor plans Pearson, Clifford A. “Kwan Henmi and Anne Fougeron give senior housing a hip new look at Parkview Terraces”. Architectural Record. Oct. 2008 (p.202)

Figure 9: Double ceiling height community space on ground floor Pearson, Clifford A. “Kwan Henmi and Anne Fougeron give senior housing a hip new look at Parkview Terraces”. Architectural Record. Oct. 2008 (p.201)

Figure 10: Typ. Kitchen with floor to ceiling height windows to make the small units feel larger Pearson, Clifford A. “Kwan Henmi and Anne Fougeron give senior housing a hip new look at Parkview Terraces”. Architectural Record. Oct. 2008 (p.202)

Programmatic: Case Studies: GL homes Active Adult Community Figure 11: Site plan of the community Figure 12: The Regency collection Figure 13: The Signature collection Figure 14: The Crown collection Figure 15: Aerial view of Valencia Pointe Club House Figure 16: Night view of Club House Figure 17: Club House plan G.L. Homes. “Valencia Pointe- Florida’s Premier Active Adult and Homebuilder”. © 2007-2008 <> (source of figures 1-17)

Form and Organization: Case Studies: Gathering Spirit Figure 18: Views toward the site from the water Figure 19: Site plan and Sacred geometry Figure 20: 3-D model view from water Rodney F Cottrell Holistic Architecture. “Holistic Architecture Net”. The Holistic Architecture Net. <> (source of figures 18-20)

64 Form and Organization: Case Studies: Vesica House Figure 21: Model view from northwest Figure 22: Model view from upper southeast Figure 23: Upper floor plan Figure 24: Ground floor plan Rodney F Cottrell Holistic Architecture. “Holistic Architecture Net”. The Holistic Architecture Net. <> (source of figures 21-24)

Form and Organization: Case Studies: Loblolly House Figure 25: Loblolly House west elevation, evening Figure 26: South elevation Figure 27: Loblolly House floor plans Figure 28: Picture of the construction process Figure 29: East elevation detail Kieran Timberlake.<> (source for figures 25-29)

The Proposal: Site Analysis Figure 30: the site Google Earth. Build date July 2008. Build time 19:04:33.

Figure 31: Pictures of typical existing house style Isgrigg, Bob and Associates. Land survey. 12-06-2004

Figure 32: town and cities near Jeffersonville Muninet Guide. Jeffersonville, Indiana. © 2008 by RICIC, L.L.C. MuniNet: Hinsdale, IL <>

Figure 33: areas within a three hour drive of the site Google Earth. Build date July 2008. Build time 19:04:33.

65 Figure 34: average climate in Jeffersonville, Indiana Jeffersonville, Indiana. Š 2008 Onboard Informatics. <>


Branford, Leland P. and Branford Martha I. Retirment: Coping with the Emotional Upheavals. Chicago: Nelson-Hall, 1979

Brislin, Paul, ED., Arup Associates Unified Design. West Sessex, U.K.: Jonh Wiley and Sons, 2008

Famer, Bonnie Cashin. A Nursing Home and its Organizational Climate: An Ethnography. Westport, Connecticut-London: Auburn, 1996

G.L. Homes. “Valencia Pointe- Florida’s Premier Active Adult and Homebuilder”. © 2007-2008 <>

Gambhir Watts, Shri. “Mind and Thought of Human Being and Holistic Living”. <>

Lee, Evelyn. “PREFAB FRIDAYS: Kieran Timberlake Associates”. Inhabit. 24 Mar. 2006. <>

March, Ph.D., Artemis. “Case Study: Elderly Homes Replace Nursing Homes in Tupelo, Miss.” The Common Wealth Fund. 12 Mar. 2007. <>.

McHugh, Kevin E. and Larson-Keagy, Elizabeth M. “These White Walls: The Dialectic of Retirement Communities.” Science Direct. 12 May 2008. <>.

67 O’Brien, Sharon. “How Baby Boomers will Change Retirment Part 1: Many Baby Boomers Plan to Mix Work and Play” <>

On purpose partners “Retirement Coaching for ‘Third Age Boomers’” <>

Pearson, Clifford A. “Kwan Henmi and Anne Fougeron give senior housing a hip new look at Parkview Terraces”. Architectural Record. Oct. 2008

Portugali, Nili. The Act of Creation and the Spirit of a Place: A HolisticPhenomenological Approach to Architecture. London: Axel Menges, 2006

Rice, Michael. “Holistic/ Biological Architecture”. <>

Rodney F Cottrell Holistic Architecture. <>

Rodney F Cottrell Holistic Architecture. “Holistic Architecture Net”. The Holistic Architecture Net. <>

Shahar, Aviv. “The Holistic Future of Aging: Baby Boomers Will Put a New, Active, Empowered Face on Aging.(Society)” Sept-Oct 2003 <http://goliath.ecnext,com>

Suchman, Diane R. Developing Active Adult Communities. Washington D.C.: Urban Land Institute, 2001

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. “Baby Boomer”. last modified on 13 Nov. 2008, at 02:15. <>

68 Willing, Jules Z. The Reality of Retirement: The Inner Experience of Becoming a Retired Person. New York: William Morrow, 1981


Alexander, Christopher. The Timeless Way of Building. New York: Oxford University Press, 1979

Baker, Beth. Old Age in a New Age: The Promise of Transformative Nursing Homes. Nashville: Vanderbilt, 2007

Bolvill, Carl. Fractal Geometry in Architecture and Design. Birkhauser,1996

Eglash, Ron and Odumosu, Toluwalogo B. “Fractals, Complexity, and Connectivity in Africa”. © 2005. <>

Gilderbloom, John Ingram. Invisible City: Poverty, Housing, and New Urbanism. Austin: University of Texas, 2008

Kargon, Robert H. and Molella, Arthur P. Invented Edens: Techno-cities of the Twentieth Century. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 2008

Marx, Herbert L. Community Planning. New York: H.W. Wilson, 1956

Stewart, Gail B. The Other America:The Elderly. San Diego, Ca.: Lucent, 1996

Wood, Frank K. Fitness for Seniors: Amazing Body Breakthroughs for Super Health. Ed. FC&A Medical Publishing. Peachtree City, GA: 2004

70 APPENDIX 1 Active adult retirement community planning design guidelines (Notes from Suchman) Suchman, Diane R. Developing Active Adult Communities. Washington D.C.: Urban Land Institute, 2001 (p.100-116)


Design Context and Relationships •

Regional Vernacular and Market Perceptions -

Design should reflect the architectural styles and materials of the region

Indigenous Landscaping -

Minimizes maintenance costs

Character, Theme, Style, and Atmosphere

“What is essential in an AARC is for all four elements to work together. Although, for example the common areas will have more of a resort ambience and will include structures of different scale from those in residential and common areas must be together through a shared theme and style. The overarching element –community character- thus of which are expressed in the quality of design and its execution. It is through the creation of a visually and aesthetically cohesive whole that an AARC achieves the comfort level and sense of place that the senior buyer seeks” (Suchman p.87) •

Character -

A distinguishing feature or asset


Quality and value perceived in the quality, presentation, construction, and maintenance of the community


71 -

An implicit or recurring idea; a motif


Architectural theming of communities must create a sense of comfort and desire


Deciding a theme depends on market results, climate conditions, local vernacular…….

Style -

The way in which something is said, done, expressed or performed


The style in which the theme is carried out down to the signage, landscaping, sales brochures and collateral details (can be considered the defining element that ties the theme together)

Atmosphere -

The overall ambience and feeling


Successfully combining the two depends on the ability of the theming elements to create the desired atmosphere. (home must feel like ‘home’, it should also be conducive to socializing, exercising, and showing their friends around the great community where they live now) Neighborhood Planning

Neighborhood and Products Mix -

The ‘status’ neighborhoods typically found in conventional master planned communities, in which neighborhood are segregated by product price, are not important to retirees in AARC.


That residents have attained the status of ‘successful retirees’ is clear from the fact that they are living in the community, no further distinction is necessary.

Neighborhood Identification -

For bigger communities, creating smaller neighborhoods within the community helps residents find their way and identify with their immediate neighbors as the community grows.

72 -

Design again must be status neutral with similar lot sizes and houses so that no neighborhood is perceived as being better than the other.

Lot Configuration and Design -

Efficiency and privacy are critical to consider


Efficiency, not being oversized


Privacy, limiting visibility into house or private yard area, cul-de-sac are not very appealing in AARC’s

Circulation and Access •

Street Circulation -

Finding ones way is important, streets and street names should be straight forward


Winding streets, ‘T’ intersections, offset intersections, loops, and long cul-de-sacs should be avoided

Way Finding -

In AARC’s practical internal circulation systems is a ‘modified grid’ with four way intersections slightly curving streets

Street Design -

Street should be sufficiently wide 32-36 feet to allow two comfortable travel lanes and at least one parking lane

Trail Systems -

Walking is the most popular form of exercise, trails should be integrated with arterial streets , and residential areas for accessibility


Concrete is not recommend, added seating is good


Trails should include biking, lanes will need to be 8 feet wide for both on the same trail with center strip, (in-line skating should be considered)


The Project Entrance -

The image that is created at the main entrance to an AARC is very important


For retirees the entrance is the front door of their sense of what the community is like and why they choose to live there.


Signage should be large for ease of legibility


Landscaping and presentation at entrance should set the tone for the community


‘Windows’ into community from main access should be placed to show off amenities

Security -

A gated and guarded entry should include a structure large enough to house at least two people


it should include a toilet facility and storage


A resident and visitors lane is needed

Amenities “Provides active and social lifestyle”

The Clubhouse: The hub of activity, community center -

Present facilities that will appeal to the community, size according to the community


Close to sales center and model homes


The clubhouse is primarily the vehicle for presenting community lifestyles


Parking should be large diagonal spaces with two way traffic


60 feet perpendicular parking bays with 9 foot stalls


Clubhouse design should have a section for golfer and golf cart parking


Do to the additional handicapped parking requirements for AARC’s , they should not all be grouped together


Fitness Facilities -

Exercise equipment should be placed so that outdoor activities can be seen while exercising


Showers and lockers can be accessed by golfers


Activity and hobby spaces(a flexible space that accommodates change)


Social areas, casually elegant for banquets and lounging



Outdoor Recreation amenities


Golf, indoor/outdoor swimming, court games


See figure ( ) for more info on outdoor recreation amenities

Residential Products -

One level homes are preferred`


Maybe there should be basement considerations


Good indoor-outdoor relationships are a plus (i.e. patio, deck, porch, balconies….)


Ample lighting


9-10 foot ceiling heights


Open plan recommended, let communal spaces flow into each other.


APPENDIX 2 Design Guidelines for Interior Design for Clubhouses Suchman, Diane R. Developing Active Adult Communities. Washington D.C.: Urban Land Institute, 2001 (p.104-105 )



77 APPENDDIX 3 Guidelines for designing golf courses for active adult retirement communities Suchman, Diane R. Developing Active Adult Communities. Washington D.C.: Urban Land Institute, 2001 (p.107)


APPENDIX 4 Design Guidelines for health and fitness facilities Suchman, Diane R. Developing Active Adult Communities. Washington D.C.: Urban Land Institute, 2001 (p.101)


APPENDIX 5 Universal design guidelines for active adult homes Suchman, Diane R. Developing Active Adult Communities. Washington D.C.: Urban Land Institute, 2001 (p.114)


APPENDIX 6 Nili Portugali’s Holistic Planning Process (notes from Portugali) Portugali, Nili. The Act of Creation and the Spirit of a Place: A HolisticPhenomenological Approach to Architecture. London: Axel Menges, 2006 (p.25-28)


Choosing a Pattern Language for the Project

“There is a direct connection between the patterns of events that occur in a place and the physical patterns- patterns of space that constitute it.” (Alexander) -

The man made environment consists of ‘atoms’ (patterns). Each pattern is an archetype of a structure that repeats itself in an infinite variety, and although form varies from place to place, there is an underlying structure that remains the same §

Arcade are an example of this underlying language they all function the same no matter what their form or location is


Each pattern in the language consists of other smaller patterns and at the same time is part of a larger pattern. In other words each pattern is a pattern of relationship. The language is a generative one and the hierarchical order of the patterns it consists of is determined by the rules of its language.

“It is the network of connections between patterns which creates the language.” (Alexander p.314) -

What lies behind the specific patterns that produce the same comfortable feeling we all share in that environment


There is an underlying pattern, an element that is innate in human beings, and there for common to all of us, so in physical space there are patterns that reflect an innate pattern structure in our brain.


The first step in the planning process is to determine the pattern of space that are relevant to the project. They will either stem from the specific content of the site or building program of the project and the cultural reality of the place, or from the more basic needs common to us all as human beings where ever we are.

81 “once I have decided on the list of patterns relevant to a specific project, a set of interrelations is automatically created between them, organically defining the scheme of the project.” (Protugali p. 26)(see figure below) •

Planning on the Site Itself: A Transitional Planning Process -

The plan of a building that is finally created is actually a structure of balance between the abstract pattern language chosen for the project and the living reality of the actual site, a reality that differs from site to site.”


Portugali’s planning process is fundamentally different from common planning practices because all the planning decisions concerning the actual physical structure of the project are taken literally to the site itself, not in the office.


The process of creation has to be inspired by what is there. Organic architecture should not be conceived as a personal and arbitrary vision of the architect, but as a product of the actual reality acting on the site.


We need to be able to distinguish between the mere clarity of the mind and those aspects that appear when extraneous factors such as attachment arise.


The creative process which feeds on what is apparently already there, is definitely not a passive one. Unlike the common planning process, where everything is predetermined, this is a process whereby the plan of the building develops gradually from the interaction of the abstract planning patterns and the unpredictable developing situation on the site. This is a process that frees us from arbitrary preconceived images stored in the mind that are irrelevant to the evolution of the plan, and opens a way to new things.


Each plan decision is the product of a direct experience of all the forces acting on the site, including the directions of the fight and view, the buildings and roads around, the topographical structure of the land, etc. the decisions are taken intuitively, since intuition is the only means of experiencing the environment as a whole entity.


The ordering according to which the planning decisions are taken on the site is determined by the hierarchical order in which the planning patterns appear on my list governed by the rules of the pattern language itself.

82 â&#x20AC;&#x153;Decision which may sometimes appear irregular and strange on paper, often make sense in reality, and vise versa, a plan that appears perfect on paper may seem senseless on the site.â&#x20AC;? (Portugali p. 28)

Undergraduate Thesis: A Holistic Adult Community for the Baby Boomers  

Undergraduate thesis reaserch document on defining a new type of retirment for the Baby Boomer generation.

Undergraduate Thesis: A Holistic Adult Community for the Baby Boomers  

Undergraduate thesis reaserch document on defining a new type of retirment for the Baby Boomer generation.