Project: Second Beginnings: Senior Living Redefined

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Rethink Senior Living

“Second Beginnings” was an interesting project by Lien Foundation and COLOURS that looks at re-imagining under-used spaces in Singapore and turn them into new hangouts for the senior communities. They proposed 10 facinating ideas that allow seniors to engage in interest-based activities, exercise and also to be able to receive care from the community. Based on the principles of the 4Ds (de-institutionalise, de-localise, differentiate and develop), these concepts were then illustrated using concept arts and publish as a book in 2018. It is also available as an e-book here.

The 10 Typologies

1. Viaduct Village

Proposed site: below Jurong East MRT Viaduct

An interchange to empower seniors to serve the community.


2. Hobby Factory

Proposed site: Hangar at Kallang Airport (former Singapore Civil Aerodrome)

Co-working space for seniors to pursue their dreams.

3. Community Pocket

Proposed site: HDB void deck at Chong Boon, Ang Mo Kio

A launch pad to connect residents and create resources to support ageing in community.

4. Wholesome Market

Proposed site: Jurong West St 41 Market

Weaving geriatric care into seniors’ daily routines.

5. Happy Express

Proposed site: Big Splash car park, East Coast Park

Senior centre on the move. 

6. Heartland Kaki

Proposed site: Redhill Close

Lifelong community in existing housing estates. 

7. Giving Campus

Proposed site: Former Changkat Changi Primary School (Opposite SUTD)

Going back to school to learn, play and live with youths.

8. Kelong Co-Op

Proposed site: Serangoon Island (Coney Island)

Cluster living on a floating village. 

9. Healing Stadium

Proposed site: Jurong Stadium

A sanctuary to restore body and mind.

10. Garden of Life

Proposed site: Tanjong Rhu Promenade

Public park with an inpatient hospice to celebrate lives well lived. 

Reflection & Thoughts

This project gives a glimpse of how urban development in Singapore is going to change. In the near future, I think we will get to see the rise of ageing-in-place housing estates and age-friendly places where intergenerational bonding can take place. I personally feel that the “Hobby Factory” idea was especially intriguing. It gives seniors the opportunity to pursue their passions and turning them into something that is profitable. Often, when we hear the word “startups”, images of tech-savvy students of young adults pop into our minds. Besides challenging the social norm, “Hobby Factory” actually gives seniors a second chance in finding a new career.

Currently, the Community Pocket is the only idea that is realised. It was built at Block 433 at Ang Mo Kio in end 2018 and is managed by TOUCH Community Services. Perhaps, I would need to head down to the facility one of these days to see it for myself. (Update: I did a field study on 23rd March 2019.)

Credits: Concept art and video by Lien Foundation and COLOURS