|As life expectancy increases and people maintain good health longer we have a large group of the Young-Old, elderly freed from the responsibilities of adulthood and childhood, and largely unconstrained by physical and mental disabilities. Current requirements for healthcare will be demanding in the future both economical and with human resources. How can we make people live longer in their own homes and make community benefit from their life experience, knowledge and time?
The aim of the project has been to create housing in an existing building for the Young-Old that encourages social interaction between the residents. By planning in an urban area and including public spaces - the building can become a destination and thereby also integrate the elderly in the community.
The existing building at Økern, was a former industry building from 1958 with an extension on top from 1979. The footprint is 90 meters x 32 meters. The project takes away the re-usable parts of the extension, leaving the loadbearing structure. Using the existing rhythm and vertical communication of the building as guidelines, new housing was added on top in addition of transforming the existing office spaces. This resulted in 44 housing units, common areas and three flats either for students living with the elderly or as rental apartments for visitors. Between the new and the transformed area, there is a green area is made possible by the existing roof structure allowing enough earth for plants and smaller trees to grow. The openings down to the former industry halls, blocked of the extension of 1979, have been reopened some places to create a visual connection between living on top and the public functions planned beneath.