CSD Architects announces the launch of its “Sleepover Project” in an earnest move to gain insight into the daily lives of aging seniors who reside in assisted living and skilled nursing communities. With the long-term goal of providing better design and building more responsive communities, CSD is sending each member of its senior living architectural design team to stay overnight in a senior living community. Between March and September 2009, as many as 36 “Sleepers” will be assigned to a diverse range of communities — both geographically and demographically — from Boston to Los Angeles, Seattle to Miami; in urban, suburban and rural locations; and with accommodations ranging from modest to high-end.
Sleepers will spend their time on site fully and physically experiencing what it’s like to be a resident in that community. Upon arrival, the Sleeper will be assigned a specific medical condition and will then assume the limitations of that condition and experience a simulated version of its treatment and care. Conditions may range from a stroke victim having partial paralysis to an Alzheimer’s patient receiving Memory Care. Sleepers will participate in the community’s daily life for a full 24-hour period, and the varying levels of service and activities will accommodate their condition and corresponding lifestyle.
“As architects charged with the both the responsibility and the privilege of designing spaces to meet the needs of senior living community residents, staff and administration, we typically involve staff and administrators in our design process, from very early conceptual design through design development and beyond,” president of CSD David Dillard, AIA, said. “However we are not always able to include the residents in that design process, and believe there is no better way to understand their perspective than to spend a “day in the life of” the residents themselves.”
CSD’s chief operating office/chief financial officer Mark Debinski said, “This is the type of activity the leadership of CSD elects to undertake during the current economic slowdown in order to prepare its staff for the future. We aren’t just hunkering down and waiting for our markets to improve; we are busy doing things like this that better prepare us to serve our clients as well as the ultimate users of our facilities.”
Throughout their stay, Sleepers will record their experiences in a journal. Those thoughts, observations and contemplations will be compiled into a master collection of journal entries with the intent to publish them for the benefit of all design professionals, complete with doodles, notes, reflections, and photos.
CSD Architects is a 60-person architecture and interior design firm headquartered in Baltimore, with offices in Dallas and Denver. Consistently ranked as an industry leader, CSD practices the philosophy of people architecture, where building strong relationships is as important as building quality structures. For additional information, contact Lisa Julian-Miller at (410) 963-3694.