December 2010

Chris Goodman and Lynn Watson, Habinteg

Design guidance for people with sight loss may conflict with design guidance for people with dementia, a Habinteg Housing Association review has found. The study revealed that while design for sight loss promotes independent living, design guidance for dementia sufferers tends to focus on care homes, or buildings providing extra care.

Key Facts:

  • Design guidance relating to dementia pay little attention to design within ordinary domestic-scale dwellings or design detail that promote independent living.
  • Design guidance for people with sight loss puts emphasis on people living independently in their own homes and contains higher detail than guidance relating to dementia.
  • Potential conflicts between the two sets of design guidance relates to garden paths, internal corridors, curved walls and features and memory objects.
  • Despite these different approaches, there are common principles between the two sets of guidance.

How can this research help?

This research will guide the design of homes and living spaces for people with both dementia and sight loss, identifying principles that may need to be altered for people with both conditions.


Research Findings: Design Guidance for People with Dementia and for People with Sight Loss – PDF version and Word version