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Table 3 Roles of urban designers and planners in emerging solutions

From: Improving housing and neighborhoods for the vulnerable: older people, small households, urban design, and planning

Approach Urban design role
Enriched neighborhoods, collective care, and all-age communities Help ensure interventions to upgrade public realm for safety, physical activity, sociability, and mobility, and are more spatially comprehensive and ambitious; includes linkages beyond the neighborhood and over time
Promote and develop wider range of housing options
Locate service hubs such as adult day care centers and new forms of spaces for well-being (e.g., expanded library or parks facilities)
Contribute expertise in public participation over urban improvements
Site and house scale
Purpose-built serviced clusters and small-scale intergenerational homes with informal care Integrate clusters into the wider community with public realm improvements and shared facilities such as restaurants and community meeting places
Design larger developments to fit into the surroundings and be attractive to a range of age and ability groups among the older population
Ensure that scattered developments have adequate accessibility features in the neighborhood public realm
Access, mobility, and communications
Mobility options; delivery and communications innovations Provide low-tech upgrades to the public realm related to universal design principles, allowing for assistive technologies both current and proposed, e.g., potential autonomous wheelchairs or helper robots in the public realm
Engage innovations in service delivery and communications which may affect urban service locations and formats
Pay attention to urban design aspects of regional scale transportation systems and how transportation can be made to serve older adults, e.g., age-friendly transit-oriented development
Highlight urban-scale design needs of older people as new technologies are developed