A future for intergenerational living

Matter Architecture will be explaining its new concepts for inter-generational living at our March forum. Matter Architecture is a RIBA Chartered Practice located in Bethnal Green, London and its research uses inspiration from a quote by Winston Churchill in 1943 'We shape buildings, therefore they shape us', claiming that 75 years later, as a society our understanding of how buildings affect behaviour, health and wellbeing is still poorly understood.

Lucy Block, who will be speaking at our forum, has worked across the practice's projects on inter-generational living - something that the firm believes is key to the creation of a fair and healthy city and that innovative design can provide spaces which foster shared experiences amongst all ages. 'Currently' the practice states 'mixed-use schemes don't result in mixed economies or social exchanges, because the market, regulation, tax and planning policies tend to enforce separation. The current crises in elderly care, affordable housing and childcare are related to one another and are crying out for a holistic solution.'

Matter Architecture is now exploring more radical models that mix diverse functions socially and economically: 'The social and economic benefits of such intergenerational relationships and their connection with the social glue of green spaces are well established. What's needed are supportive policies and opportunities to develop a pilot and demonstrate its value'.