An innovative integrated design project facilitates social cohesion and intergenerational residential communities, to prepare for an ageing society.
HOUSING SOLUTIONS FOR AN AGEING SOCIETY
Laboratory of Architecture 60+ (LAB 60+) is the first project in Poland to focus on innovative approaches to design for an ageing society. The Laboratory sets out to develop a model that ensures buildings function in a way that meets the needs of all residents, while facilitating neighbourly ties and social cooperation.
FROM POLICY CHANGE TO INNOVATIVE HOUSING PROJECTS
LAB 60+ aims to change housing policy in Poland in the context of an ageing society. The scope of this project ranges from developing expertise within the Development Ministry, to implementing innovative housing projects. LAB 60+ is a response to the demographic changes that are affecting societies across Europe and has been recognised by the European Commission as an Innovation Laboratory. LAB 60+ is a platform for exchanging knowledge and ideas, and for organising inspiring events on the issues surrounding ageing.
AN INNOVATION LAB FOR AGE-INCLUSIVE DESIGN
LAB 60+ works in close co-operation with many partners, from academia to government, and from private institutions to NGOs. The Lab has been supported in particular by the Faculty of Architecture at the Silesian University of Technology. LAB 60+ was co-created by experts in the field, who design a vision of a residential area, the buildings, layout and design, right down to the interior details and everyday functions. LAB 60+ has been recognised by numerous bodies, won the Polish Culture Portal's "O" Award in the category of Architecture, and was also awarded a prize in the "Marka Śląskie" regional competition in Poland. An innovative example from the LAB 60+ project is the Multigenerational House. The House opened in Łódź in 2018 and was the first housing project of its kind in Poland. Residents of the Multigenerational House live in the city centre with convenient access to basic services, guaranteeing them a high quality of life. Residents who meet certain criteria are also eligible to pay reduced rent, to ensure the project remains socially diverse. The Multigenerational House in Łódź is a place for young people, older people, large families, and people with disabilities, to live, meet, integrate, and support one another.
Developing Foundation Laboratory of Architecture 60+ (LAB 60+) was a consequence of my professional experience and research interested in ageing society in urban renewal context. One of the inspiration and motivation to carry out this project was my internship "Top 500 Innovators" at University of California, Berkeley in US funded by Ministry of Higher Education and participated in the first start up Academy for women in Poland - Girls go start up Academy by Education Foundation Perspektywy. These programs and internships motivated me to be open to collaboration in this field and creating a team that believes in the LAB 60+ mission and improve a spatial senior policy in Poland together.