When you picture a retirement community, do you think of modern and sustainable architecture, allowing residents to age in place and engage with others? Architect Matthias Hollwich of New Aging does.
When Hollwich turned forty, he began to prepare for aging. He researched the designs of current retirement communities and realized he wanted to create something new. So he set his firm, HWKN, to work.
“A retirement community could become an empowerment environment,” Hollwich writes on the website for his recently released book New Aging. “[A] nursing home could turn into a healthiness hub, an informal volunteering app could provide support to older people.”
The book is a collaboration with Bruce Mau Design. It features images, ideas, and advice such as “Treat aging like starting a company.” For people in their forties (or earlier) who want to plan for life’s next step to caregivers and the elderly, the book and HWKN’s ongoing project site provide food for thought.
Hollwich emphasizes the importance of building communities in an interview with NPR.
“We need to make sure that we nurture the social surrounding around us so we have friends and a safety net. This comes through personal contact,” he says.
For the elderly, Hollwich recommends mixing with younger generations, as well as staying active in work or volunteering – “It’s important that you have a meaningful contribution to society.”
New Aging is available to purchase here. The website also allows readers to contribute their ideas.