Blackwood Homes and Care launches £12.5m future communities project
Scottish developer Blackwood Homes and Care has launched a £12.5m project to create three ‘communities of the future’ in Dundee, Glasgow and Moray designed to help older people live longer, healthier and independent lives.
The Blackwood Neighbourhoods for Independent Living will offer a ‘value exchange model’ to encourage and reward community participation, with additional coaching and support for residents as they age.
The residents in each neighbourhood will have their own focus with an emphasis on community involvement and choice over their own lives as well as co-designing and testing a range of innovations to support healthy ageing.
Residents offer their support by taking part, using their own data to build the best programme for healthy ageing.
The scheme will also include accessible outdoor spaces so that people can sustain physical activity, supported by digital connectivity and infrastructure that helps security and ethical data control.
Sustainable energy and transport will aim to reduce community carbon footprint and reduce transport costs.
Blackwood has already built two similar developments in Glasgow and Dundee.
The ‘smart’ Blackwood Homes are designed to remove obstacles that can disrupt daily life for older people and people with disabilities and come equipped with electronic sliding doors, electric blinds, rise and fall surfaces, cupboards and sinks, and a self-cleaning toilet.
Blackwood’s CleverCogs digital system meanwhile enables customers to organise their services, care and medical appointments, stay in touch with family and friends via video calls, and listen to music and entertainment.
For customers living in Blackwood Homes, the system can also be used to control lighting and heat to opening doors and blinds.
The new scheme has been awarded £6m from the UK Research and Innovation funding as part of the 'Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund/Healthy Ageing Challenge’ with a further £6.5m of contributions from Blackwood and industry partners.
“While Blackwood has a unique focus on design and innovation for independent living, this funding takes us into an exciting future, where we can support more older people and people with disabilities to live their life to the full,” said Blackwood chief executive Fanchea Kelly.
“What we are proposing at our three neighbourhoods will effectively create communities of the future, providing what we hope is a blueprint for great places to be as people grow older,” she added.