Symposium: NOFIM: Case of a PDR and a POE

Jan 01, 1991

Since it is so rare that a post-occupancy evaluation (POE) follows use of pre-design research (PDR), this symposium proposes to have only two papers, the pre-design research, followed by the post occupancy evaluation. Having only the two papers at more length allows the audience to hear more and inquire more in depth about a case that moves from PDR to POE. While NOFIM is a case history of an elderly community building its own environment, it is also instructive for other populations participating in the design process. Nofim, a 157-unit building for retired people, was designed and built in Jerusalem by a group of retired Canadian and American emigres. The group formed a non-profit corporation, sought government funding and hired a social scientist and architect to help them make design decisions. They used social science data and a committee system to decide on the priorities of design components. The method is innovative in participatory design in that the clients controlled the process themselves and made their own interpretations of social science data. Decisions were organized around four central elements: admissions and discharge policy, size of units, extent of services made available and policy of hiring residents within the building. Research on lifestyles using Barker's techniques revealed aspects of behavior that were both peculiar to Jewish culture and universally relevant to elderly in any culture.

Robert Bechtel (University of Arizona)
Arza Churchman (Technion-Israel Institute of Technology)
Adriana Plotkin (Technion-Israel Institute of Technology)
EDRA22/1991 Proceedings
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Published & professionally reviewed by: 
Environmental Design Research Association (EDRA)

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