‘Individual Cohabitation’ – PTT Heerlen

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The growing number of people who live life as singles, due to the individualization of society, and the increasing stock of empty buildings and especially office buildings are two evident trends in our current society and the built environment. The individualization of society has begun in the time of industrialization and is now so pervasive and so much related to the way people live, that a non-individualized form of life wouldn’t be an option for most people anymore. Until the second half of the sixties social housing in the Netherlands focused predominantly on isolated family homes, but from that time on, interest in other housing options than those for family households increased and the pursuit for more commonality within the housing situation and the aim for integration arose. These developments triggered new forms of living. In the late 60’s an initiative called ‘Centraal Wonen’ emerged in The Netherlands. The more open way of living in the ‘Centraal Wonen’ idea prevented families or singles, which were likely to be isolated, from isolation and included them in the whole. The active use of communal areas plays an important role in this idea.

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