Armed Forces Retirement Home

Washington, DC

Bowman provided landscape architecture services for development of the new Commons and Health Care Center project on the grounds of the Armed Forces Retirement Home in Washington, D.C. (AFRH). The CHCC is a key step in the home’s long-range plan for affordable state-of-the-art care to our nation’s retired service men and women.

The designed landscape incorporates healing gardens for the residents, providing an important therapeutic and social space for the Home. Landscapes have the potential of alleviating stress and anxiety and countering the physical, social and mental challenges of aging and those suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s.

In the proposed plan, sheltered outdoor areas are provided for seating, gathering and viewing the landscaped grounds of the Home as well as daily activities in the Commons and Quadrangle. Accessible walking routes of various lengths extend throughout the site, with expansive views and opportunities to sit and rest. Roof top gardens are placed at each level, creating a seamless transition of indoor and outdoor space. Courtyards are placed in prominent areas for ease of access and viewing and include a fountain in a central location. A labyrinth garden, adjacent to the meditation room, provides a calming, mild form of exercise in a peaceful setting. Throughout the site, walkway, furnishing and planting details are used that address the physical and sensory challenges of the elderly and create a home-like atmosphere.