Week 3: How factors in the built environment affects dysthymic behavior

Nurul Nabilah Izzati (1002873)
‘Invisible Dialogues’ Studio

I am studying a selected site (Blk 7 King George’s Avenue) for elderly with dysthymia such that I am able to identify their stressors on a macro scale.

In the previous week, I have identified dysthymia as my topic and elderly as my target group. In this week, I have dived deeper into the research and conducted an interview with a loved one, who is a working adult clinically diagnosed with dysthymia. Prior to that, based on my own research, I have identified vulnerable places for this target group and these places are homes and marketplaces. After my short interview, we have confirmed that homes and marketplaces (or rather, places that draw large crowds) generate a lot of uncertain scenarios that may evoke a fight of flight response from these dysthymic individuals. For design purposes, I had to condense this information into strong factors that are highly tied into the built environment.

For dysthymic individuals, these are the stressors in their built environment.
On the macro scale:
1) Proximity of necessary amenities
2) Avoiding crowded places
3) Lack of greenery
4) Challenging terrains

On the micro scale:
1) Dark environments
2) Background noise
3) Mobility friendly
4) Familiar, nostalgia evoking images
5) Comfortable rest places
6) Good ventilation

Following this, I identified a site within our group’s Kallang masterplan area, with my central focus point of my site being the location of Blk 7 King George’s Avenue, one of the few HDBs in the area with one room rental flats (which tend to be the residential options for the extremely vulnerable group of elderly, living independently). As I am still in the process of studying photos from the site visit, I simply began mapping out proximity of necessary amenities (as stated in the macro scale) on the itself, taking into account the 400m walking radius that will be comfortable for elderly to walk and access daily. The next week will be focused on completing the site analysis and collectively making sense of the studio masterplan as well.

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