Industry Trends: Senior Living

Technology trends senior living

By Preconstruction Manager Casey Hughes

It’s an exciting time for the senior living industry as we are seeing a new generation, the baby boomers, make waves with their arrival into retirement. With this demographic shift along with most seniors leading longer and healthier lives, our clients are focusing more on urban housing with smart home technology, on-demand services, and an array of expanded amenities in more modern facilities. Here’s the top five trends that we’ve got our eyes on heading into 2020:

  1. LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION
    The demand for traditional suburban, sprawling senior living communities is quickly diminishing in favor of urban sites. Seniors are looking for walkable properties with proximity to public transportation, healthcare, and entertainment options. In addition to being built in metro town centers, the management of these properties are being tasked with finding ways to help seniors stay connected to the community through intergenerational activities.
  2. AMENITIES GALORE
    Today, interpersonal relationships, social activities, and intellectual stimulation are a huge part of a typical baby boomer’s daily life. Designs are becoming more focused on integrating robust dining options, outdoor activity areas, and
    tons of gathering spaces into the plan. Residents want sophisticated, restaurant-style dining rooms with fresh daily menus instead of cafeteria style food service, along with flexible dining options. As for more amenity spaces, resistance
    pools, yoga studios, gyms, gardens, landscaped areas, alfresco dining, and fire pits are among resident favorites.
  3. MODERN AESTHETICS
    The traditional look and feel of senior living communities is changing to incorporate more contemporary designs. Modern-day facades are being confused for recently built projects for college graduates. Any remaining holdovers from aged designs that may have been considered institutional, are being quickly eliminated. Interior colors and furnishings are warm and inviting, with natural light flooding the space.
  4. FLEXIBLE DESIGN
    By integrating multi-purpose space into facilities, the same space can be used in different ways and for different events instead of needing a unique room for every activity. For example, instead of a library and a meeting room, a new design could include a coffee shop that can be used for those activities. This flexibility also flows into the residential units, with new unit types being delivered to market.
  5. MORE TECHNOLOGY PLEASE!
    Smart devices, like iPad’s are being given to residents, allowing them to schedule activities, or select dining options. Residents can also be seen wearing devices that track health and safety statistics. Management teams are finding new ways to use technology to improve the resident experience and telemedicine is allowing residents to avoid off-site appointments. New facilities are also being fitted with electronic key fobs for access, and package systems for Amazon deliveries.

The near future offers plenty of changes for the senior living industry with many new innovations and evolutions anticipated over the next decade. We look forward to building for the next generation!

Homes on Quaker Lane Tops Out

Group photo topping out construction framing
Sandy Spring, MD

Homes on Quaker Lane has reached a construction milestone! The project celebrated its topping out on Thursday, October 24th with a lunch catered from Mission BBQ for subcontractors.

The independent living community will offer 80 new independent units, 72 of which will be affordable and eight will be market rate for seniors. This will later become a component of the larger, existing Friends House Community, a campus of residential facilities for seniors. The campus has significant green space areas, walking areas, and a community garden that will be available to residents at the Homes on Quaker Lane.

The team has been facing many challenges throughout construction. There were three water lines running under the purposed building pad and the Verizon cable line that ran through the building pad was entangled in a 36″ tree stump that caused a delay in hand digging. A 15″ storm drain and fiber optics ran under the other side of the building pad at the elevator, along with the main electric duct bank running through the main section of the building. The biggest challenge was maintaining emergency access given the site’s congested work area. Despite this, the team expects to reach project completion by May 2020.

Topping Out Photos

The Strive for Five Accomplished at the HCC Challenge Run!

Columbia, MD

For the fifth year in a row, Harkins is the overall Corporate Challenge Champion of the Howard Community College Challenge Race! This is the sixth annual 5K Challenge Race, focusing on corporate health and wellness programs for small and large organizations in our community. This year’s elite fleet consisted of 89 teams, made up of almost 500 participants. The Challenge 5K is a team event where individuals race for the fastest combined score as they run, climb, and crawl through an obstacle-filled course on the college’s campus.

The race raised over $116,000! Proceeds goes to support HCC’s student scholarship programs, allowing many HCC students to pursue a career in the healthcare industry.

As a team, Harkins’ Team 1 came in 2nd, 6th, 7th, and 15th with an aggregate time of 19:53. This was made up of Ethan Burbridge with a time of 18:00, Landon Leatherman with a time of 19:05, Josh Turskey with a time of 19:08, and Alan Kratz with a time of 22:01.

Congrats to all of this year’s runners and participants for being such a worthy cause.

Harkins Ranked Among 50 Fastest-Growing Companies in Baltimore

Baltimore, MD

We are proud to announce that Harkins is one of the 50 fastest-growing companies in Greater Baltimore, according to the Baltimore Business Journal’s 2019 Fast 50 list.

Each year, the Baltimore Business Journal (BBJ) publishes the Fast 50 to honor the top companies in the region who demonstrate consistent rates of rapid growth. For this year’s list, the BBJ ranked companies by the highest average percent change in revenue between 2016 to 2018. To be eligible for inclusion, companies had to have revenue of at least $100,000 in 2016 and $1 million in 2018.

As a result of our comprehensive and deliberate strategic plan to improve our financial performance, provide opportunity, and expand our geographic footprint, Harkins has grown 40% in the past two years. In late 2017,  we opened an office in Charlotte, North Carolina which helped lay the foundation for our southeast expansion.

The Baltimore Business Journal unveiled the region’s ten fastest-growing companies, as well as the company who made the top spot on the list, at a special event on October 17th. Harkins was listed as #15. For details and to see the full Fast 50 list for 2019, click here.

Harkins was also recently identified by the BBJ as the #9 largest private company and the #21 largest defense contractor in the Greater Baltimore area.

Harkins Awarded WaveMaker Award for Metro Heights

Harkins team with enterprise homes and moseley architects
Baltimore, MD

We are excited to announce that Metro Heights at Mondawmin has received a WaveMaker Award from the Baltimore Chapter of the Urban Land Institute (ULI). The 11th Annual WaveMaker Awards ceremony was held on October 2nd at The Assembly Room in Baltimore, MD. The program recognizes outstanding real estate development projects and visionaries in urban development throughout the Baltimore area.

Previously comprised of 12 vacant and abandoned lots and structures, Metro Heights is a one acre site that has become a major focus of redevelopment in Baltimore City. The wood frame building is made up of four-stories built over a one-level cast-in-place parking garage. It offers 70 affordable apartments comprised of a mix of one-, two-, and three-bedroom units.

The building was built to LEED Silver standards and includes features that promote energy efficiency and sustainability. Amenities include in-unit washers and dryers, a club room, game room, business center, fitness area, and yoga studio.

Metro Heights will serve as a landmark in the community and a source of hope, opportunity and pride for residents, neighbors, and visitors to the area. Harkins was proud to bring this project to life with Enterprise Homes and Moseley Architects.