Aging in Place: Life-Span Design

Old cottage

Sometimes I can’t figure designers out. It’s as if they flunked human anatomy.

~Erma Bombeck


Aging in Place

Universal Design is LifeSpan Design. The late Michel Philibert, a French philosopher, and gerontologist, once proposed that we are at the dawn of a new understanding where aging is defined as a pattern of change throughout the entire lifespan. So designing for children, older adults, and those with “disabilities” is not thinking about separate groups of users–but a spectrum of human-environment interaction.

I call this ‘Inclusive Design,’ a concept that is informed by the philosophy that living is a dynamic process of change all along the continuum that is life.

Aging = Living.



Philip B. Stafford: Life-Time Communities

Your Home: Planning to Age in Place

Virtual Tour: UD Living laboratory  

(Philibert, M. in Dimensions of Aging: Readings (eds Hendricks, J. and C.D. Hendricks) 379–394 (Winthrop Publishers, Cambridge, 1979).