Written Answer by Ministry of National Development on whether the Ministry will add dementia-friendly features like those piloted in Nee Soon, to other old estates and incorporate such designs in HDB's future BTO housing projects
May 10, 2021
Ms Carrie Tan: To ask the Minister for National Development whether the Ministry will (i) add dementia-friendly features like those piloted in Nee Soon, to other old estates and (ii) incorporate such designs in HDB's future BTO housing projects.
HDB estates and precincts are designed to be inclusive and accessible to residents of all ages, including seniors. For new developments, Universal Design (UD) and barrier-free design principles have been incorporated to enable residents, especially the elderly, to move around their neighbourhood with ease. Existing developments are upgraded with senior-friendly features such as ramps and resting points through upgrading programmes like the Neighbourhood Renewal Programme (NRP). Senior-friendly facilities such as elderly fitness corners and community gardens are also planned and provided for where possible.
HDB recently announced the “Designing for Life” roadmap, which sets out how HDB will plan and design both new and existing estates to provide a high quality living environment that can support residents’ overall health and well-being across different life-stages. This includes catering to residents with dementia.
For instance, one way to create a neighbourhood that is more accessible to residents with dementia is to facilitate way-finding by making the environment more easily recognizable. For the Nee Soon pilot, the Town Council introduced features such as clear wayfinding markers, large block numbers and using easily recognisable colours to demarcate different zones in the neighbourhood. On HDB’s end, it has also started designing and developing estates and precincts to strengthen their sense of identity, with certain features to facilitate easier recognition of places and aid in way-finding, such as larger font sizes for signs and block numbers, and the use of icons, motifs and colours.
HDB will continue to work with experts and partner agencies to look into how other such dementia-friendly features can be incorporated into new developments, as well as in existing estates through upgrading programmes.