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AARP Recognizes Senior Campus for Innovative Planning, Design

Wednesday, June 9, 2010 General News J E 4
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Developer Recognized as a 2009 Livable Communities Award Winner

CHICAGO, June 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Safety, energy efficiency, accessibility and comfort are key features of urban living for Americans of all ages, and nationwide organizations such as AARP and the National Association of Home Builders annually recognize projects that focus on improving the quality of residential life for residents of all ages. Today, AARP joined with North Center residents to honor the North Center Senior Campus and its development team of Alderman Gene Schulter, the City of Chicago, TACH Development, Catholic Charities, and the Lakota Group.

The Lakota Group, which led the design for the North Center Senior Campus received AARP's 2009 Livable Communities Award. AARP and NAHB established the annual Livable Communities Awards to recognize homes and developments designed to enhance the daily comfort, convenience and safety of the people who live in them.

"AARP cosponsors the Livable Communities Awards to recognize companies that go above and beyond in designing homes that significantly improve the quality of life for residents of all ages," said Bob Gallo, AARP Illinois State Director. "With four winners nationwide in 2009, we are proud to recognize The Lakota Group with this prestigious honor."

"I am really proud of the recognition that the North Center Senior Campus has received. This is truly a community-led project to provide affordable housing options for the senior residents of our neighborhoods," states Alderman Schulter. "Many of the campus residents have lived in the north side of Chicago their whole lives and this project has allowed them to stay in their community. I am really proud of the work of TACH Development, Catholic Charities, The Lakota Group and all the other professionals on the team in making the community's vision a reality."

The 2009 AARP and NAHB Livable Communities Awards (www.aarp.org/homedesign) recognize forward-looking builders, developers, and architects for award winning designs that demonstrate energy efficient, convenient and comfortable residential living for people of all ages and abilities:

"The North Center Senior Campus is one of only a few urban campuses in the country that include affordable apartments and condominiums for seniors along with a health center, City senior center, central green, corner park and shared amenities such as computer rooms, workout rooms, libraries, and meeting space," noted John LaMotte, a principal with The Lakota Group, the planning and design firm that crafted the master plan and landscape design.

Established in 2007 by AARP and NAHB, the Livable Communities Awards are presented annually to builders, remodelers, architects and developers for projects that enhance the daily lives of people of all ages and abilities by incorporating:

A panel of expert judges appointed by NAHB and AARP reviewed applications and selected the finalists. Judging criteria varied from category to category, but points were awarded based on: 1) Universal Design Features; 2) Ease of Maintenance and Energy Efficiency; 3) Exterior Design and Landscaping/Site Design; 4) Incorporation of Livable Community Design Features; and 5) Stakeholder Involvement.

-- design elements that accommodate the needs of all residents with all levels of physical ability from children through grandparents; -- easy access to community services and features such as retail, restaurants, medical, social and cultural activities, as well as viable transportation options; -- improved energy efficiency and enhanced site design; and -- better communication with key stakeholders.

SOURCE AARP Illinois
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