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Five winners ― a green builder in Burns Harbor, Ind.; a developer in Santa Fe, N.M.; an architect in Portland, Ore.; and remodelers in Lakeland, Fla., and Pasadena, Calif. — were named the recipients of the 2010 Livable Community Awards during ceremonies at the NAHB International Builders’ Show in Orlando last month.
The awards, co-sponsored by AARP and NAHB, were created to shine a spotlight on builders, remodelers, architects and developers who build and design homes and communities with features that improve everyday comfort, safety and personal independence for those who live in them.
“As they begin turning 65, the boomers —the first generation to grow up in the suburbs — are looking to update their homes to be more comfortable or to find that just-right place that keeps them close to their family and friends,” said David Shotwell, AARP’s senior director for livable communities. “These winning homes and communities demonstrate the universal appeal of great style and comfortable design for people of all ages.”
The winners, which, for the first time included two co-housing communities, were:
Treasure Homes, Inc. for The Gem in Burns Harbor, Ind.
Category: Home up to 2,500 square feet
Treasure Homes built The Gem with a no-step entry, a functional, but stylish kitchen and beautiful, modern bathrooms. Fashion meets function in this single-family home that was designed to serve the current and changing needs of all its potential residents and visitors.
The Housing Trust for ElderGrace in Santa Fe, N.M.
Category: Development up to 250 units
ElderGrace was created as an affordable, accessible, environmentally conscious and livable co-housing community for residents aged 55 and over. Residents have access to safe walking paths, common spaces for meals and gathering, and smartly-designed, energy-efficient homes.
Schemata Workshop, Inc. for the Daybreak Co-housing community in Portland, Ore,
Schemata Workshop, Inc., of Seattle, designed the Daybreak Co-housing Community, focusing on pedestrian safety and bicycle traffic while creating affordable and user-friendly units with optimal features. The community was designed for multi-generational residents and is located close to public transportation and key community services.
Green Construction Services, Inc. for the Mason Residence in Lakeland, Fla.
Category: Single-space remodeler
Green Construction Services transformed a bathroom for a veteran and his wife by updating its look and making it easier and safer to navigate — while keeping the current footprint. The bathroom is an example of forward-thinking design that reflects the physical needs and aesthetic desires of its residents, while also being able to serve the needs of future residents.
Mannigan Design, Inc. for 1040 Orange Grove in Pasadena, Calif.
Category: Major-space remodel
This remodel integrates nature and the surrounding environment into the design and leverages a number of high-tech products and features, creating a significantly revitalized and inviting space for the residents to use now and in their retirement years.
“Although most boomers will grow gray in the suburbs, once they become empty nesters, they will have the freedom to consider a whole variety of housing styles and community preferences,” said Shotwell.
“Co-housing appeals to people who like intimate community life and these winning projects also have the advantages of the walk-ability and universal design that appeal to all ages,” he added.