The British Open Design Competition, to be run by Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), will ask entrants “to think beyond what has previously been available in terms of retirement accommodation in the UK, and concentrate on delivering exciting and innovative new designs which will meet the demands of baby boomers looking for something a little different in later life”.
The project follows the Future Homes Commission’s latest report, Building the Homes and Communities Britain Needs, which calls for a focus on ensuring new home designs meet the needs of the resident.
McCarthy & Stone group marketing director Sam Turner said: “With the Future Homes Commission report stating that an extra 300,000 new homes will need to be delivered year on year, and the Office of National Statistics projecting that those aged 65 and over will account for 23% of the total population by 2035, it is becoming increasingly important that we address the added pressure that an aging population will place on the housing market.
“However, despite this growth in demand, it also remains imperative that we do not lose sight of the individual consumer’s needs, and that as an industry, we are to continue to develop housing products that will also fit in with the generational shift in the perception of age.
“Baby boomers see themselves very much as the generation that broke all the boundaries, and that is exactly what we are asking architects to do when considering what would be the ideal type of housing for these kind of forward thinking people.
“We really want design professionals to challenge their pre-conceptions of what age means and create solutions which celebrate the wisdom and freedom that the aging process should encompass.
“It is our belief that downsizing into a purpose-built property in later life can open up doors to enjoying a greater way of living, and with this competition we are hoping to show just how great that life could be.”
For entry details see www.mccarthyandstone.co.uk/riba