Contributed by: C. Aparnaa
Like every user group, senior citizens frequent public spaces based on their interests and needs. They setup khatlas (cots) under the shade of a tree in the morning or late afternoon. They frequent the seating spaces established outside their residential societies. They gather at the otlas (platforms) in front of their houses or closed shops during the evening. They desire seating spaces near a temple or grocery store that they visit daily for social interactions. They can be seen with their grandchildren in parks and gardens during the evening to enjoy nature, while looking after their grandchildren. They take routes to their everyday spaces that have a conducive walking environment like designated walkways, frequent pause points and soft pathways that are good for walking.
Senior citizens have also seen their public spaces change over the past few decades. They have witnessed the infrastructural development that impacted their neighbourhood’s public spaces and, in some cases, also facilitated its preservation. Our cities need to take into account views of the elderly to create streets and public spaces that are inclusive, comfortable and accessible.
Location: Thaltej Gam, Ahmedabad. Picture Credit: C. Aparnaa
Which public spaces do senior citizens in your family access? What are the factors that affect the comfort of these public spaces? Has it changed over the years? If yes, how?