Luna Azul is the Nation’s First For-Sale Neighborhood of Homes for Adults with Special Needs

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With ownership, Luna Azul offers a community and smart home solution for the growing population of adults with disabilities and their care-giving families

“Property ownership endows Luna Azul residents with personal agency, a community of compatible neighbors and a sense of pride, while their families can rest assured that their loved ones are safe, engaged in life and cared for.” Mark Roth.

Luna Azul, the nation’s first for-sale community built for adults with special needs and disabilities, offers a new model for a growing and urgent problem: guaranteed long term supportive housing for such adults once their families and guardians can no longer provide care. Located in Phoenix, Arizona, Luna Azul is a gated neighborhood of 30 single family homes, a clubhouse, pool and shared green space to encourage social interaction among residents. Homes are priced from the mid $300,000s to the mid $500,000s. The clubhouse and first model home will be complete in April, 2019, with the entire community completed by year’s end.

“We worried about our daughter’s future, especially after we’re gone,” said Mark Roth, developer of Luna Azul, whose adult daughter has a developmental disability. Housing alternatives for special needs adults typically include rental units, group homes and Section 8 housing. But each is constrained by government or charitable funding, and/or compromised by an imposed roommate relationship. “Property ownership endows Luna Azul residents with personal agency, a community of compatible neighbors and a sense of pride, while their families can rest assured that their loved ones are safe, engaged in life and cared for,” adds Mr. Roth.

A “Crisis of Community”
Available evidence suggests that up to half of people with an intellectual disability are chronically lonely, compared with around 15 to 30 percent of people in the general population. With a social life that is structured, roommates pre-determined and minimum wage caregivers who come and go, there is little opportunity for spontaneous and meaningful human interaction. The cognitive, physical, and mental health problems already associated with an intellectual disability are likely to be compounded by this “crisis of community.” The Luna Azul model seeks to be the antidote to this loneliness. Residents will neither stand out, nor be isolated. As developer Mark Roth says, “My daughter will always be invited to the neighborhood pool party.”

A Planned “Pocket Neighborhood” of Smart Homes
Luna Azul is designed as a ‘pocket neighborhood,’ a concept made famous by the project’s architect Ross Chapin. For Chapin, a pocket neighborhood provides the setting for neighbors to develop meaningful relationships beyond family and housemates. The inclusive design mitigates social isolation.

Each home’s living areas and front porch face a courtyard and shared greenspace encouraging neighborly encounters. A perimeter wall surrounds the community for safety and security. Luna Azul is located near urban amenities and public transportation. Its home owners’ association will employ a full-time, onsite director and overnight staffing to help ensure engagement, community participation and peace of mind for Luna Azul’s resident population and their distant families. And a partnership with Partners4Housing provides an online matching platform to help find compatible roommates.

Homes are also prewired for Z-Wave smart home technology, so that residents can implement the smart solutions they desire now, or in the future. The choices are extensive: automated drapes, cameras, security systems, smart and remote-controlled thermostats, lighting and door-locking mechanisms, to name a few.

About Luna Azul
Located in Phoenix, Arizona, Luna Azul is the nation’s first for-sale community for adults with special needs offering residents and their families the peace of mind that comes with home ownership. When completed later in 2019, Luna Azul will serve as a model community for adults with special needs, providing 30 single family homes, a clubhouse, pool and shared green space to encourage social interaction among neighbors. Developed by Mark Roth with his adult daughter in mind, and designed by Architect Ross Chapin, who is renowned for his pocket-neighborhoods, Luna Azul offers a promising solution for the growing population of adults with disabilities. For more information, visit https://www.lunaphx.com.

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Margee Herring
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