Aging Gracefully: How a New Architecture for Old Age Helps Everyone

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New Aging by Matthias Hollwich

Architect Matthias Hollwich’s book New Aging offers a radical blueprint for rethinking and redesigning old age

Architect Matthias Hollwich’s mission, simply put, is promoting a design philosophy that makes everyone more comfortable, connected, and happy. Sure, the 44-year-old’s recently released book, New Aging, which draws from his work and research around aging, society, and designing spaces for the elderly, both with his New York-based architectural office, HWKN, and his work with students at the University of Pennsylvania, may sound like it’s focused on the later half of life. But as he’s discovered through practice and personal experience, designing buildings and cities to better accommodate the eldest among us helps us all by creating communities that are more socially connected and accessible.

“My suggestion is to make it personal,” says Hollwich, whose own experience as a child in Germany, when his grandmother passed away at home, surrounded by family, sparked an early interest in the subject. “Forget about the theory and look at the little things, think about how you would want to live your entire life. Too many people wake up on the topic of aging when they retire, and that’s too late. We’re active and influential today; now is the most important moment to take charge and make an impact.”

Curbed spoke with Hollwich about his research and new book, and learned some new rules for architects aiming to design spaces for a healthier society for every age. […]