The Norman Transcript

Breaking News


December 29, 2013

What you need to know about building a house for all ages

NORMAN — I have taken the classes required to become a Certified Aging in Place Specialist. What does that do for me, and what does it mean?

I have come at this from just living in the reality of getting older. This certificate now means I can formally promote myself professionally as a specialist who can help people understand how their built environment will affect their freedom in living independently day to day.

As an architect, I have been designing with accessibility standards in mind and using the Americans with Disability Act, also known as the Attorney’s Full Employment Act of 1990, since it became law. I had no choice if I wanted to stay licensed in the state of Oklahoma.

Being a design professional meant understanding the ramification of the law and integrating how it was interpreted into building design for the health, safety and welfare of the building users.

I wrote the article that started me moving down the road of writing for The Transcript about aging in place and design last summer after my back surgery and before my knee surgery.

The article focused philosophically on this aging process and the connected physical realities that come with it, and how this process has influenced my design process, especially in designing homes. I have been designing homes since 1975. That is almost 40 years.

Back when I started as a student intern of 20 years young, designing homes with two stories was pretty common, and many of those homes had all the bedrooms on the second floor. Many had only small baths on the first floor. None were designed around the idea of growing old and staying in them as long as possible or designing those with features that would make it easy to convert them to places where disabilities would not keep anyone from moving to a nursing home.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Parents urged to research ADHD

    Q: Our son has just been diagnosed with ADHD, and we have been told he may need social skills training. He is in third grade, and this is all very new and foreign. Do you know anything about this training, and what does this mean for his ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Eggspectations

    You may or may not be aware that for many people Easter Sunday is a greater and more important event than Christmas Day. On Easter Sunday the purpose which began with His birth, celebrated on Christmas Day, was fulfilled. Nevertheless, in ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Biting protocol for puppies

    Dear Dr. Fox: My puppy really likes to chew on my hand when I pet him. I am afraid he might get more aggressive when he gets older. His sharp teeth hurt, and sometimes he runs at me and jumps up to paw me. I push him away, but he comes ...

    April 17, 2014

  • Norman volunteer recognized for work at Veterans Corner

    Each week, we recognize a volunteer who makes that extra effort to assure that a veteran or surviving spouse receives VA benefits. Shirley Clark-Cowdin has been with us four years. During that time, she and her crew of ladies have helped ...

    April 16, 2014

  • Here is how reverse mortgages operate nowadays

    Dear Savvy Senior, What can you tell me about reverse mortgages? I was considering one last year, but now I hear they are more difficult to get....

    April 15, 2014

  • Annual Norman Iris Show set at library

    A tradition of the Norman Area Iris Society and Norman Public Library returns this spring with the annual Norman Iris Show from 1 to 4 p.m. April 27 in the Lowry Room of the library, 225 N. Webster Ave....

    April 15, 2014

  • Allan Oehlschlager, family celebrating 100-year milestone

    From Kansas City to Norman with stops in Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Yale, Oklahoma City and Edmond — looking back as he prepared to mark his 100th birthday today, Allan Oehlschlager termed it a “glorious ride.” Born April 13, 1914, in ...

    April 13, 2014

  • Single parents to be honored

    Five Oklahoma single parents and two adult children of single parents will be honored with awards at the Single Parent Support Network black tie fundraiser, “An Enchanted Evening,” on April 29 at the Jim Thorpe Museum and Oklahoma Sports ...

    April 13, 2014

  • Dreams for the next 14 years

    On Monday I’ll be the proud aunt of a 14-year-old niece. For 14 years, I’ve had the chance to get used to her being 14 someday, and I’m still not there. Maybe in another 14 years, I’ll realize that she’s not a baby anymore....

    April 13, 2014

  • Midwest City reunions set

    Midwest City High School class reunions for 1970 to 1979 will be hosted in June at the Midwest City Community Center....

    April 13, 2014