The Influence of social resilience on architecture : toward the design of a multi-purpose centre for the senior citizen population in Durban.
Budhal, Shivani Ashwin.
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The concept of resilience represents the social and spatial inequalities that exist among the senior citizen population and continues to grow everyday. The notion of resilience is as a result of the rapid global urbanisation process that shapes the urban fabric and thus, fails to connect senior citizens to the mainstream of society and the physical environment. The exclusion from planning and developmental programmes and processes has forced senior citizens to create their own culture and identity by either claiming their rights to the city and become active agents of the developing urban environment; or reside in aged-care facilities where their plight is hidden away and neglected. This dissertation draws upon relevant literature, theories, concepts, case studies and precedent studies that are pertinent to the fundamental social and physical challenges of senior citizens. The theory of Critical Regionalism and The Right to the City explores the needs of senior citizens in order to create a decent form of living in an inclusive environment. The various precedent studies address the importance of an inclusive architecture and the importance of economic activities for senior citizens to create independent and active members of society. Similarly, the case studies analysed identified the value of senior citizens through their unique culture and identity. Therefore, by understanding and identifying various strategies, design principles and guidelines for an inclusive architecture, this dissertation unpacks the socio-economic benefits of senior citizens. The objective is then to establish a Multi-Purpose Centre that aims to facilitate social interaction between senior citizens and the rest of society as well create a successful age-friendly built environment.