Rural Canadian prairie intergenerational cohousing: a place for integrating lives and sustaining culture

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Ilg, Vanessa T.
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The interior design practicum establishes an awareness of the vastly decreasing population in Canada’s rural regions, specifically within the Prairie Provinces, due to a socially increased concentration on the development of urban centers. The project also brings attention to a progressive focus on privatization, isolation and segregation in today’s society. Through the research, analysis and design conducted, the practicum demonstrates one possible alternative to seclusion issues fostered in detached living found throughout rural Canadian regions today that better cater to their demographics and may entice populace to remain or move to these rural areas. With a focus on continuity, the consistent existence of historical and cultural preservation over time while progressing and evolving with contemporary innovations and ideas, the practicum’s underlying basis is to acknowledge the importance of rural, cultural and historical continuity through an alternative intergenerational cohousing model. By following ideas in the development of a suitable ‘home’ environment, integrated living strategies, critical regionalist design and adaptive reuse techniques, the rural cohousing project develops a solution that combines all three continuity components mentioned and promotes regional identity, community-oriented living and cross-age learning and networking.
Interior Design, Rural Planning, Rural Canadian Housing