Sat. Jan 22nd, 2022

When a realtor introduced Gail Cain and her husband, Sam Hasegawa to their 1910 residence in Sioux Falls’ Cathedral Historic District, Gail states she understood proper absent the historic residence with its leaded-glass windows, pocket doorways and wrap around porch was the household for them.

“I grew up in a dwelling kind of like this. So, it usually felt like property to me – the minute I walked in. And I really don’t want to ever give it up. We have performed what we can to make positive that we can remain in this article for as long as we can,” Gail Cain claims.


In retirement, the pair remains wholesome and energetic. But they figure out they may perhaps not often be equipped to do stairs. With this in intellect, they just lately added a primary ground shower room all-around the corner from an present powder home.

“Essentially we have all the things we have to have on the to start with flooring,” Cain suggests.

Like Cain, most South Dakotans would choose to stay in their personal properties as they increase aged. Regrettably, most properties are not developed with growing older in intellect, describes Leacey Brown. She is a Gerontology Field Specialist with South Dakota Point out University Extension.

“Many of our residences are not developed with older older people and the requires of conclusion-of-daily life in thoughts. They commonly are made for this legendary, one spouse and children that is never going to grow aged. They phone it, “Peter Pan,” housing. You know, housing for people who are never heading to grow old,” Leacey Brown claims.

Brown claims to age-well at residence, there ought to be no-stair obtain to all important locations and it is critical that doorways and bogs are large enough to accommodate a walker and wheelchair.


An available property is not just for older folks. Architect Gene Fennell says even young people today are inclined to an accident that could impact their mobility.

“We’re all an incident away from needing that accessibility. And perhaps only temporarily, perhaps for 6 months, possibly for six months, you know. The price tag of renovation is so a great deal far more than the believed approach and executing it suitable in the initially position,” Gene Fennell suggests.

The believed approach Fennell references is common design – or developing with accessibility for all in head.

“I commence with Universal Layout, and that is structure that does not go away people today of distinctive skills behind. Men and women have distinctive qualities, in other phrases not segregation of entry. When I speak about segregation I’m not conversing about racial, or just about anything like that. I’m chatting about skills, actual physical talents … Layout really should take all of that into thing to consider and not be binary in selections that can be made,” Fennell suggests.

To emphasize his place, Fennell shares an illustration of how he carried out common layout ideas when he created an addition to the Pennington County Courthouse. The original 1922 creating had a lot more than 30 actions major to a grand entrance. In 2017, Fennell’s addition welcomed the general public with a no-step entrance.

“Instead of forcing persons to make a option of, “we go up these measures or we go in a wheelchair elevate,” we just tipped the whole floor so that everybody approached the interior of the setting up the exact same way. I take that imagined system into residential style,’” Fennell says.

Universal style and design was leading of head when group wellbeing challenge supervisor and certified contractor Shauna Batcheller, labored with architect Robert Arlt, to design her family’s home. She and her spouse chose to build their new property within a narrow good deal between two flip of the century houses in the vicinity of a downtown Sioux Falls historic district. The Batchellers have two young sons.

“Our intention was to foreseeable future-system as a lot as we could…it is adaptable to our existing household. But also adaptable to our potential wants and ideas and you know, our shifting health circumstances above the many years. So, we crafted in as quite a few of all those features as we could to make it a residence that was helpful. So, items that we put in put are: zero-move entry, a lavatory and kitchen area on the major ground. There is also a place that can conveniently change to a bedroom on the main level. There is a huge rest room that could accommodate a wheelchair. There are also designed-in laundry hookups on the principal stage, so we could quickly convert our home to a single-flooring living and we could accessibility the outside and not have to use stairs in any way to go to any of the main functions of our household,” Shauna Batcheller claims.


Batcheller suggests she did not have to give up on layout elements she desired to create a residence pursuing common structure concepts.

“I believe that’s a issue for people today. They think it’s heading to be extra highly-priced to make a residence universally created or that they are going to have to make trade-offs, and their house is heading to look like a clinic space. But I hope to share some photos of what we have been able to do, just to reveal how it can be finished and that it can be finished in a lovely way,” Batcheller states.

In the course of their home’s design, Batcheller broke her foot and experienced to be non-fat bearing for two months

“It was this kind of an unexpected circumstance that reinforced our conclusion to make our residence uncomplicated to get in and out of, simple to get around in,” Batcheller states.

Finding their property in just walking distance of enjoyment, eating and essential expert services like a grocery keep and write-up office was also intentional since dropping the means to travel is frequently component of the getting older method. For South Dakota Public Broadcasting, I’m Lura Roti.


  • Leacey Brown, SDSU Extension Gerontology Field Professional 605-394-1722 or [email protected]
  • Dakota At Home: 1-833-663-9673
  • The Dakota Url Assistive Technologies Mortgage Fund gives small-interest, prolonged term financial loans to allow folks with disabilities in South Dakota a financing choice exclusively designed to purchase assistive technologies devices and gadgets, house entry advancements or car obtain modifications. For a lot more details, make sure you take a look at: https://www.dakotalink.internet/at-funding
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  • Common Resources
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