by Wid Chapman and Jeff Rosenfeld
8 x 10 in; 240 pp; Hardcover
Release date: November 15, 2011
The so-called “Baby Boomer” generation—the population of 75 million born between 1946 and 1964—grew up in a time of drastic social and economic changes, and we’ve been following these Boomers closely through the various cultural conventions and innovations they have created over the last half-century.
Now, as Boomers are grow closer to retiring from their jobs, there is a shift in the way they are living in later life. Rejecting the traditional “senior housing” establishment, many instead seek out alternatives to stay engaged socially, physically and politically, by co-housing or having “get-away” homes become their primary residences.
These emerging ageless homes and communities that Boomers are creating for themselves are explored in Unassisted Living, a new book by Jeff Rosenfeld, ADHT faculty member and professor of gerontology at Hofstra University, and Wid Chapman, Parsons faculty member and principal of Wid Chapman Architects. The two completed their research by interviewing architects, designers and Boomers, and ultimately identified six different lifestyles, ranging from a new interest in urban life to strategies for living “off the grid” thanks to advances in telemedicine and other electronic communication to multigenerational living that reflects the complexity of contemporary families. The book—which is the first one to explore these housing alternatives—illustrates these lifestyles by featuring over thirty architect-designed houses and apartments in cities, suburbs, and rural areas throughout the United States.