Award-Winning Multifamily Amenities That Meet Baby Boomer Demands

George Burns once said, “You can’t help getting older, but you don’t have to get old.” This has never been truer than it is today. Baby boomers — the eldest of whom are now in their 70s — are redefining what it means to grow old. Seniors no longer want to live out their golden years in a sprawling community in the middle of nowhere; instead, they want to be where the action is and share new experiences with loved ones.

According to NAHB’s “What Home Buyers Really Want” study, 67% of baby boomers prefer to live in the suburbs, and desire community features such as proximity to retail space and walkable communities with walking or jogging trails. They are also starting to move away from more resort-style amenities such as golf courses and tennis courts, with 53% and 45% of baby boomers, respectively, stating they do not want those features.

Canvas Valley Forge in King of Prussia, Pa., mirrors these trends with a new concept for the 55+ demographic that gives residents freedom to enjoy the things they love most, while exploring new and exciting hobbies and adventures. Instead of resort-style living, the architecture, design, programming and services are focused around an approach of simplified living, striving to streamline and declutter the lives of its residents.

“Before pen was put to paper for any design, I knew that [developer] Bozzuto’s site was perfect for an age-qualified rental community,” shared Manny Gonzalez, FAIA, LEED AP, principal at KTGY Architecture + Planning —the design firm for the project. “While walking paths and trails are the No. 1 activity for this age group, proximity to shopping, dining and entertainment is the next biggest amenity, and this location certainly had that with the King of Prussia Mall within walking distance.”

The adjacent King of Prussia Town Center supplies entertainment and amenities to residents, providing the means to a vibrant, active lifestyle without the financial burden of traditional senior living. Four stories of for-rent apartments introduce a clean and modern design. Open floor plans designed with flexibility in mind provide soaring six-foot windows, designer lighting throughout, and terraces, balconies and decks to bring in the outdoors.

“Once the design started, I have to give credit to the folks at Bozzuto — Mike Henehan and Julie Smith, among others — for putting together a great team to design the floor plans and amenities that created the ‘canvas’ for the residents of this community to paint their own vibrant picture of how they wanted to enjoy this stage of their life,” Gonzalez added. “If you start with a great location and build a creative team who enjoys a collaborative design process, the result ends up being an award-winning community like Canvas.”

Canvas Valley Forge and its top-quality amenities and services were recognized by both the Multifamily Pillars of the Industry Awards (Best 55+ Multifamily Development) and the Best of 55+ Housing Awards (Market-Rate Rental Community – Gold) at the 2019 International Builders’ Show.

Entries for the 2019 Multifamily Pillars of the Industry Awards will open on May 6. Interested applicants can apply for the 2020 Best of 55+ Housing Awards starting May 13.

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