IKEA, Skanska in collaboration with the Queen of Sweden have launched a social housing project.
The first ‘SilviaBo’ apartments are currently being completed outside Stockholm and use a variation of IKEA’s modular BoKlok housing concept.
The project is a response to the country’s ageing population and will focus on the needs of the elderly and people needing accessible dwellings.
It will rely on the same prefabricated timber units as BoKlok, but incorporate shared social facilities and modified interiors with more “dementia-friendly layouts” to help the elderly live independently for longer.
“There is a huge need in Sweden for housing for the elderly. The demographic changes we see seems to be more or less the same in many countries,” said BoKlok’s project manager Magdalena Stadler.
“Today, the offerings on the housing market are quite expensive – for the few affluent, rather than for the many. Our hope is that SilviaBo can be a small part of a better solution,” she told Dezeen.
SilviaBo evolved from the Queen of Sweden’s ambition to develop a housing model that could help elderly couples live comfortably in their homes for as long as possible, even if one of them was to develop dementia.
Like BoKlok, the homes are being built from wooden components that are prefabricated and assembled on site. The housing will vary from two to four storeys, and host a mix of one and two bedroom apartments.
Key features of SilviaBo that will differentiate it from BoKlok include wide entrances and flat walkways suitable for wheelchairs, minimal thresholds for elevators and stairwells, automatic door-openers and extra lighting.
Wellbeing and social interaction will also form a key part of SilviaBo. IKEA envisages the housing incorporating a number of community facilities like park-like gardens with flowers and vegetables, a “village green” and a clubhouse complete with barbecues and pergolas.
The housing will be complete with solar panels, green roofs and, like BoKlok, IKEA furnishings throughout.
There are approximately aleady11,000 BoKlok homes across Sweden, Finland and Norway. IKEA and Skanska have also recently signed a deal with Worthing council in West Sussex to bring the low-cost housing to the south of England.