It has been brought before Parliament that aging, vacated schools can be turned into residential housing for elderly citizens. Many believe this would allow those who are aging to live in a residential environment and enjoy their later years.
These schools are large and therefore would be perfect for redevelopment for many housing units and common spaces for tenants and their guests to congregate. That said, there would be a significant cost to redevelop these schools into housing for the elderly. It has been argued that the cost of these renovated properties would be turned over to the tenants, making these projects quite affordable for developers.
The Positive And Negative Arguments:
It is believed the cost of redeveloping these vacant schools would come at a healthy cost but would be passed on to the residents while allowing aging citizens to live in comfortable surroundings.
The Minister of National Development believes this is an excellent option for elderly people to age gracefully and with dignity. It is also believed that people will grab up these units because of the many attractive options that would come with these units.
By bringing many public facilities and services together, residents would have convenient access that is an added plus for older people trying to get around.
Another big concern is designing these buildings so older people are not being isolated in their community and not be able to mix in with larger communities. While members of the Government Parliamentary Committee believes there are many positive reasons for redeveloping these schools, there are other aspects that must be considered including the needs of the residents and the swing of opinion from area supporters.
Mr. Choo, academic and real estate consultant who has studied many different areas that have retirement housing is backing the plans. He strongly believes that altering these buildings into residential units is an excellent idea and can be done very successfully.
Residents who live by one of the schools slotted for redevelopment said they have absolutely no objections to developing a retirement facility for the elderly. They would be able to mingle with other people in the neighborhood which would be an excellent opportunity for them.
Other residents at another location said they look forward to the school being renovated. Elderly residents would not be loud and disruptive like school children, which is a positive upswing.
According to many reports from last year, showed that due to the drop in enrollment and schools merging, there are approximately 11 vacant schools and it is believed another 4 will be vacant this year.
It has also been pointed out that the Singapore Red Cross, Academy of Singapore Teachers, and the Enabling Village are currently located in renovated schools. To date, the government is looking into many options for housing elderly citizens, which is the largest population of people at this time.
Tearing down these schools for new buildings is a waste of time and money when it has been proven these schools will make excellent residential units. Due to their size, there will be many units available for older people who, in turn, will be paying for the renovations of these buildings which seems like a win-win situation for everyone.
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