Rethinking Intergenerational Housing
Intergenerational housing is a new idea based on an old model: people of different ages living together and sharing their skills and time. In the past, this tended to be within extended families, or tightly-knit local communities. More recently, this idea has been introduced into some older people’s housing. Matter’s idea is that such participation can be shared amongst unrelated people, living independent, modern lives and benefitting mutually.
Currently, housing provision is highly segregated, inflexible and often unsuitable, creating emerging crises in special needs and elderly care, affordability and loneliness. These all generate big costs for society. Our model seeks to tackle these through a social impact based approach.
Working with a current grant from Innovate UK and supported by a wide network of industry partners we are shaping a suite of policies and design principles for a new form housing for all ages, that supports and enables participation and sharing amongst residents.
Intergenerational housing will help to promote the social mix and connected communities so critical to citizens’ health and well-being. It would inform our future development plans, and those of other local authorities and housing associations around the country. We are looking forward to working closely with Matter on this project.
Jenny Rowlands, Executive Director supporting communities, Camden Council