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Six new tech-enabled housing concepts for older adults

The future of housing for seniors – or the future of senior housing? Innovators are approaching the tech-enabled future of homes for seniors from multiple directions – support for people with dementia, new approaches to tech in a senior housing campus, new systems for aging at home, and new kinds of age-friendly housing. Innovation is sorely needed -- considering that current approaches to senior housing, whether in assisted living (too expensive) or age-segregated communities (too isolated and/or risky) may not be right for everyone.  Here are some other recently noted housing approaches, material is from sites or news:


The Caledonian House, a new assisted living home specially designed for those with Alzheimer’s disease, "will offer best in class memory care following a ribbon-cutting ceremony on July 13 at 11:00 a.m. on the Scottish Home campus, 2800 Des Plaines Avenue, North Riverside. The Illinois Saint Andrew Society, the oldest charity in Illinois, will continue its culture of caring with the Caledonian House. The state-of-the-art residence accommodates 20 residents in a personalized and home-like, yet very high tech design. Even prior to its opening, the facility was honored with the British Consul General’s prestigious 2016 Award for Innovation." Learn more at The Scottish Home


Masons of California Smart Home. "A recent tour of the Union City campus, introducing demonstrations of new tech tools that seek to improve senior care. Two model "Smart Home" apartments were unveiled – living spaces retrofitted with cutting edge technology, designed to be inexpensively integrated into existing architecture. These trial Smart Homes provide a glimpse of how new technology tools may be able to work together to improve resident safety and quality of life: A sensor triggers soft floor lights when someone gets out of bed in the middle of the night. A sensor switches the living room lights off upon leaving, and back on upon return. Music turns up and down by voice command." Learn more at Masons of California.


People Power.  "People Power, which makes an app that turns your old iOS device into a camera, wants to turn the conversation to aging at home. In the next 20 years, over 13.4 million people over the age of 75 will be living alone, according to Harvard University. People Power wants to use its Presence Pro Care system, shipping later this year, to facilitate communication between people and their elderly family members or friends. It’s essentially a kit composed of a hub, sensors, emergency buttons (which can be worn around the neck or on the wrist or placed on a keychain), and a connected pill dispenser." Learn more at PresencePro.


Maine CITE. Goals: "committed to helping Maine citizens with disabilities increase access to and acquisition of AT when needed to participate in Education, Community Living, Employment and Information Technology/Telecommunications. Broaden understanding and promote wider availability of assistive and universally-designed technology. Educate people with disabilities, their families, and the general public to know how to get and use assistive and universally-designed technology." Learn more at MaineCite.


Tiger Place and radar sensors. "The radar sensors were used to monitor the walking speed of residents in 10 Tiger Place apartments for two years. The radar devices were concealed in a wooden box and placed in the living room of each senior resident. Residents also were provided monthly assessments by professionals to establish whether they were at risk for potential falls. The data collected were then compared to the data captured by the radar." Learn more at University of Missouri Center.


HoneyCo Homes, Nashville. From the company, “We’re building the next generation of age restricted communities. HoneyCo exists to make the lives of aging adults in America better through technology and community engagement. We leverage existing technology to address home safety and security, keeping adults out of assisted living longer. We also provide the social and community network to keep our members engaged.”  Learn more at HoneyCo Homes.