Projects for senior living

What is the starting point?

The proportion of older people in Switzerland's population is increasing every year, and the number of people over 80 years of age is forecast to double to 1.11 million by 2050. This demographic development also has profound effects on the built environment. The majority of older people lives at home and only a small proportion of 4% live in retirement homes, nursing homes or hospital facilities.

Housing needs change as people progress through life, and often older people live in spaces that no longer meet their requirements. At a certain age, the question arises of moving to a more suitable dwelling. It is therefore not surprising that the need for age-appropriate housing is increasing rapidly.

What are the challenges?

With retirement, the connection to the place of work dissolves. On the other hand, older people, often do not want to move away from the community in which their family and friends live and which represents the connection to their everyday life. The attachment to the residential environment leads to a preference for a move within the same neighborhood or municipality.

It is important that there is a social interaction with people in other phases of life, as is the case with projects for multi-generational living. The living environment and neighborhood relationships have a significant influence on the well-being of the residents.

Household structures and lifestyles in older age pose special requirements and personal living situations play an important role in the choice of housing. Finding a suitable apartment at a reasonable price in the vicinity of the current one is a challenging task, especially in centrally located communities.

One of the challenges associated with the growing proportion of older people is to take into account their special housing needs. Many older people live in apartments that no longer meet their changing requirements.

Often a property does not have an elevator and it is not easily accessible, especially for a person using a wheelchair. There is also often a lack of good public transport connections to visit friends and relatives.

The existing apartments or single-family homes are often too large for the changed requirements and due to a lack of alternatives, older people hardly have the opportunity to adapt the size of the apartment to their household structure. For example, just under half of the over 80-year-old population in Switzerland lives in apartments with three or more rooms per person and, at 66 m2 per person on average, has over 40% more living space available than the rest of the population.

Rarely does the familiar environment, especially in decentralized locations, provide the desired services for older people, such as meal delivery, shopping, cleaning, laundry services, administrative assistance or medical care.

Which factors influence the success?

Project development for a specific user group is complex and requires expertise and in-depth experience. The following factors have a significant influence on the success of a project for the creation of housing for people of advanced age:

  • Central location with good connections to public transport

  • Proximity to familiar surroundings (family, friends)

  • Reasonable construction costs and as a result, reasonable rental rates

  • Compact living spaces and suitable floor plans

  • Availability of quality services and care

  • Proximity to shopping and restaurants

  • Interaction with other age groups (multi-generational)

  • Communal indoor and outdoor spaces

  • Possibility for private, quiet retreats

How do we proceed?

We accept the challenge and develop projects that meet the requirements of the increasingly aging population. On behalf of an institutional investor specializing in housing for the elderly, we seek cooperations with municipalities and social institutions to realize future-oriented projects.

Communities and social institutions often have land reserves that they can use for a purpose that is in the public’s interest. This land is specifically used to create affordable housing for the elderly population. We develop the concept for the project and bring in the institutional investor as a partner for financing and implementation.

What are your advantages?

AREA develops the project and municipalities or social institutions benefit from the following advantages:

  1. Reliable implementation partner: The pension fund has in-depth experience in the implementation of housing projects for the elderly.

  2. Secured financing: With rising interest rates, financing with borrowed capital is becoming more expensive. The rising construction costs also represent uncertainty for the implementation.

  3. Long-term cooperation: As an owner with a long-term perspective, the implementation partner has a great interest in the sustainable success of the operation.

Our reference projects

Badenerstrasse, SchlierenBadenerstrasse, Schlieren

Rossfeld, BernRossfeld, Bern

Alpina Areal, BurgdorfAlpina Areal, Burgdorf


How do you go about developing your residential project?

Your contact person at AREA