The Zusammenleben 4.0 project in Halle-Neustadt will create an entire residential district based on the principles of smart living.
Most people want to live in environments that are attractive, affordable, and offer social interaction. But in major cities in particular, conditions are often less than ideal, and compromises have to be made. A home in an in-demand area with good public transportation comes with a corresponding price tag. Against this backdrop, Halle-Neustadt is looking to implement state-of-the-art smart-living solutions that improve quality of life for an entire district at low cost.
The choice of Halle-Neustadt is not pure chance: The federal state of Saxony-Anhalt, where the city is located, has the oldest population in Germany, with an average age of 47.5 in 2016. The first step was to equip a single model apartment with intelligent technologies. Now the aim is to roll out the concept for an entire district, led by Fraunhofer’s Ambient Assisted Living Alliance in conjunction with the Halle-based Fraunhofer Institute for Microstructure of Materials and Systems IMWS. Named Zusammenleben 4.0 (Living Together 4.0), the undertaking is aligned, in particular, with the needs of older people, but is also designed to help individuals with physical disabilities lead independent lives. For instance, apartments will be able to detect dangerous situations, such as falls or anomalies in residents’ vital signs. The telemedicine features can be activated or deactivated according to personal needs and preferences. Furthermore, these smart homes provide assistance that is unobtrusive in nature by, for example, automatically switching on lights or closing shutters.
But the new district is not only aimed at seniors and people in need of care. The target group for the approximately 4000 converted apartments includes families and young singles—who will likewise benefit from the convenient capabilities of an intelligent home environment. There are plans for a sports center, which will act as a hub for personal interaction. After all, the overarching vision of Zusammenleben 4.0 is to create smart communities: enabling shared journeys, improving logistics for long-term care, and encouraging activities, such as urban gardening, that bring old and young together.