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image of wealshire

The Wealshire
Lincolnshire, Illinois

Architect: Behles & Behles, Architects
Consultants: Institute on Aging and Environment

The Wealshire is a residential facility tailored to the specific needs of Alzheimer's patients and those with related dementia. Situated on a wooded, 20 acre tract in Lincolnshire it also offers day and respite care. It is designed to accomodate 144 in-residence patients in all stages of Alzheimer's disease, and is the first facility in the Chicago area to provide a complete continuum of care.

Important Design Principles

The design establishes a non-institutional image and consists of individual households of 16-22 people (all in the same stage of the disease), each household is designed to function like a single family home, creating a home-like ambiance for the patients, families and visitors. A single story structure avoids spatial confusion due to stairs. The patients will be involved in everyday living tasks in the seven households with regional themes. The themes are designed as orientation devices, reinforced through colors, fabric and furniture in each of the households. Built-in doorway curios to display memorabilia and things from the past encourage reminiscence. Privacy curtains separate the bathrooms within each bedroom to avoid confusion. Looped wandering pathways in the gated yards bring back the patients to where they started, allowing a safe outdoor experience.

image of section plan Elevation

image of floor plan
Plan showing different spaces in a household


Institute on Aging & Environment School of Architecture & Urban Planning
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee P.O.Box 413 Milwaukee, WI 53201
Telephone: 414-229-2991 Fax: 414-229-6976

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