Following is an excerpt from the May 2014 issue of ZOOMER Magazine:
Home Improvement – Smart strategies for aging in place gracefully in your own home.
By David Lasker
Toronto landscape architect Michael Presutti (principal of MEP Design Inc) offers these ideas based on his designs for several long-term care facilities.
No more yard steps “Create landscaped yards that eliminate the need for steps. Instead of installing and (unsightly) straight ramp from the driveway to the entry door, incorporate gentle ramps and landings into your walkways.”
All-weather car access “Build a semi-enclosed car port or install a new entrance directly from an existing garage. This will facilitate getting from your car to inside your home during inclement conditions, thereby eliminating the sense of being trapped inside by the weather.”
No more snow shoveling “Install in-ground snow-melting cables on walkways. Should the cost be prohibitive, place heated rubber mats with a weather sensor on all steps and main-approach walkways to eliminate the need to rely on assistance for removing snow and ice during the winter months.”
Reduce glare “Use low-reflectivity paving materials on driveways, patios and walkways to reduce sun glare and eyestrain when enjoying the outdoors.”
Pergolas “As we age, our skin becomes more sensitive to direct sunlight. Create a garden pergola to provide shady seating areas. Growing trumpet or honeysuckle vine on the pergola will attract hummingbirds and butterflies. They will put smiles on people’s faces regardless of age.”