Active living - Memory friendly future visions for Omenamäki service centre

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School of Arts, Design and Architecture | Master's thesis
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Arkkitehtuurin maisteriohjelma
With the rapid worldwide development of the ageing society, the number of seniors with memory disorder increases. The situation sets great demands for the design of facilities and services for memory care. With the background of growing pressure on governmental institutions and the increasing population living alone, the concept "ageing in community" shows the potential of providing additional support for the elderly and group with memory disorder, living at home and in care facilities. This thesis, firstly, studies theories about the nature of memory disorder, the concept of "ageing in community", the requirements of a memory-friendly community, detailed design principles for a memory-friendly environment, and the role of community centre through literature review. Further, it explores the case of Omenamäki Service Centre located in Porvoo, Finland, and proposes an improvement plan for it. The crux of this work has been the user-centred and participatory process that has helped identify strategies and objectives that will both enliven the facility and promote memory friendliness. Omenamäki Service Center is a significant community asset that will benefit from optimising facility use. The result is a presentation of future visions, which are based on a renewed understanding of services that was arrived at through user consultation and a visioning workshop. Two proposals of the public area are developed: The first vision changes the existing structure as little as possible, while the second vision proposes a significant level of intervention. The new design demonstrates how functional programming and environment modification meet the physical and mental needs of seniors with memory decline. The design proposal creates a memory-friendly community facility that not only offers residents a higher quality of life, but also supports the elderly living in the neighbourhood and invites visitors to share the community experience.
Arpiainen, Laura
Thesis advisor
Vladykina, Natalia
memory disorder, ageing in community, memory-friendly community, user-centred design, participatory design, supportive living environment