With the announcement that Auckland Council is going to redevelop housing for older Aucklanders, we meet some of the people who live in the villages.
Paula, Bentley Court Glenfield
“I loved my unit from the moment I saw it. When I moved in, all the other Bentley Court residents came and introduced themselves. We chat to each other as we come and go from our homes, always look out for each other’s properties, and regularly have little celebrations when it’s someone’s birthday. I never feel lonely living here and love feeling part of a community.”
Paula’s unit – along with all the other units in Bentley Court – had a complete makeover earlier this year as part of Auckland Council’s work to ensure its housing for older people is better suited to their needs.
“It’s been completely redone and I think it’s just beautiful. I have a spacious bathroom with non-slip flooring that’s easy to manoeuvre my walking frame in and around, a walk-in shower which easily accommodates my shower stool, double-glazing throughout and a heat pump. But I’ve only had to turn the heat pump on once all winter. You see I come from Southland and don’t think Auckland winters are cold,” says Paula, smiling.
All the furnishings in her unit are also brand new – from the carpet to the kitchen benches, oven and fittings. In total, the refurbishment took just six weeks.
The exterior of Paula’s unit has new, wide concrete ramps and railings have been installed along the ramps and at the front and back doors.
“The park benches council also had positioned around the village are great because they’re a rest stop for anyone who needs them but they’re also a nice place to sit and have a chat to others.”
These days Paula can only walk using a walking frame but the shopping mall, library, bus stops and taxi stands are super handy, located opposite Bentley Court so she’s never far away from what she needs.