Theme Table Meeting ‘Caring Architecture / Caring City

Recently, ‘de Architect’ organized an inspiring gathering with a group of architects active in housing-care projects. In an open discussion, ideas were exchanged on how to elevate housing for care living to a higher level. Our firm participated in this event and shared our experiences, specifically regarding our recently completed residential care building ‘Zuidoever’ in Amsterdam.

Residential Care Building ‘Zuidoever’ in the Kop van Zuid: More (Living) Quality for Your Money

Building better for older adults with dementia and physical limitations is highly relevant. The demand is rapidly increasing, but costs are under pressure. This often leads to standardized solutions that do not meet the specific needs. Zuidoever demonstrates that it can be different. The ambition is to offer an improvement in living comfort. We seek solutions for a living environment that adapts to its residents, where they and their caregivers feel a maximum connection to the outdoors, light, and greenery. A place where residents are encouraged to remain active and socialize. Happier people have lower care needs. That is a quality that pays off.

Zuidoever is located in the heart of Amsterdam, in an area bustling with activity and noise. A large greenhouse in the center of the building plays a significant role with water and greenery: here, residents are ensured outdoor living throughout all seasons, in a traffic-calmed atmosphere. Common rooms for the groups, along with their kitchens, are situated around this greenhouse with gardens on various levels. The private apartments overlook the city. The design features no corridors but consists solely of living spaces with ‘islands’ housing utility functions. Walking around is unrestricted. The daylight from the greenhouse invites residents to use the common living rooms.

A Different Revenue Model

By focusing on revenue instead of just costs and implementing a pre-designed second life for the building, the depreciation of the building becomes much more favorable. The proven lower care needs in a building where people live happier is another factor that works out well financially. For Cordaan, this allowed for a higher upfront investment, resulting in a building with warmth and atmosphere that was previously unimaginable for the target group.

New Standard

With ‘Zuidoever,’ Cordaan has set a new standard for housing for older adults. It presents a different perspective on living for people with dementia. And this is urgently needed if we want to provide suitable housing for the growing group of people with dementia and physical discomforts in the future.