One of my many fond memories of my grandfather is of him, in his late 80s, protecting my cousin, Kathleen, by killing a garden snake that he thought was threatening her. Whether the snake was dangerous is highly debatable, and whether my athletic, teenage cousin needed protecting was even more highly debatable. But the incident helped our grandfather demonstrate his ongoing vigor, and so I believe the poor creature lost its life for a good cause. Kathleen and her parents lived across the street from my grandfather—three generations living on the same block—looking out for each other on a daily basis in what is now called an intergenerational community.
In the package of stories that begins on page 42, you will find many examples of what planners and developers are doing to accommodate the needs and desires of all generations. While some seniors still demonstrate a preference for living in communities strictly limited to their generation, increasingly developers are finding that empty-nest boomers and young millennials are searching for many of the same things—amenity-filled homes in vibrant, walkable neighborhoods. Kathleen McCormick goes into detail about just what today’s seniors are looking for in their homes and communities. Sometimes, McCormick reports, the way to satisfy the needs of people of all ages is to create age-restricted sections within larger planned communities.
Amenities are not all about golf and water-aerobics classes anymore, either. Developers are finding that multifamily residents of all ages care deeply about their pets, and they are willing to pay more for accommodations that not only allow dogs, but cater to them. “Love me, love my dog” is the thinking of many tenants these days. (Cats have long had better luck than dogs in passing muster with landlords and condo boards.) As Jeffrey Spivak writes on page 57, no new community is complete, it seems, without a well-designed dog park. I would put forth that they ought to be called dog-owner parks, as it is hardly Fido that makes the decision to spend a good chunk of the afternoon there. I know this boomer’s housing decisions certainly would factor in the needs of my exuberant cockapoo, Riley, who is an aficionado of dog-owner parks. And my daughter, a millennial, won’t consider renting an apartment that does not welcome her 70-pound golden retriever, Cooper.
In this issue, beginning on page 63, we present the five finalists for this year’s ULI Urban Open Space Awards. And we again spotlight two winners of ULI’s Global Awards for Excellence. In this instance, they are two large-scale urban projects—one in Detroit, Michigan, and one in Seoul, South Korea. I would like to correct the record on one of the award-winning projects highlighted in the May/June issue, Roosevelt University Student Living, Academic, and Recreational Center. We incorrectly cited the architect responsible for the project. The architect of record was VOA Associates Inc.
I am happy to note that you will receive an extra issue of Urban Land this year. In place of our September/October issue, we will publish separate issues for September and October, with the latter dedicated to coverage of ULI’s 2014 Fall Meeting host, New York City. Watch for your next issue to arrive in the mail in mid-September.