Porten Development

62 | PORTEN DEVELOPMENT ‘THE ACTUAL LIFE BUILDING IS EVEN MORE BEAUTIFUL THAN IN THE RENDER IMAGES’ By the year 2040 there will be 2.5 million people over the age of 75 in the Netherlands. Erwin Drenth (director Bouwinvest Real Estate Investors): “Many of them will be stuck in houses that are no longer suitable for them: too big, with stairs, in a neighborhood where they feel unconnected. Plus, the number of potential informal carers per person will have halved by that time. Therefore, developing senior housing and residential care properties now is a necessity, not a luxury.” CARE PHILOSOPHY Enter the LIFE building. Drenth: “Porten Development saw the opportunity and we stepped in. We are really proud of our cooperation: all homes are single-level without thresholds, there are sufficient meeting spaces and facilities aimed at forestalling the need for care. Not only with a pharmacy, physiotherapist, district nursing, domestic help and a nursery home, but we also work with hostesses who organize activities. These ladies are highly appreciated by the residents.” Moreover, LIFE’s population comprises many LHBTIQ+ oriented people. “Creating an inclusive community in which you can age in a vital way is what we have always aimed for.” The project has been a profitable investment, too. Care property has seen a growing demand lately, especially by pension funds. Drenth: “This ‘Impact Investing’ aims for more than just financial profits. Investing in future-proof and sustainable houses has a double advantage: it gets the housing market moving again, and it has a positive impact on the general costs for elderly care, because formal care is postponed. Plus, it is a rather stable investment, which is valued immensely by pension funds.” OPPORTUNITIES The informal attitude of the developers at Porten was agreeable and productive. Drenth: “Johan and Richard are sympathetic, outgoing personalities. They are real entrepreneurs who think in opportunities and possibilities, not in obstacles. When we first worked together in 2015, the fund was just starting up. However, given their previous experience with Bouwinvest, they put their trust in us and were not afraid to jump in at the deep end. This has resulted in a beautiful building, even better than in the render images. The city of Amsterdam now even wants to use it as an example for future tenders!” ERWIN DRENTH BOUWINVEST HEALTHCARE Porten Development found a solid and inspired partner in the Bouwinvest Healthcare Fund for the funding of the Houthaven LIFE project in Amsterdam. Erwin Drenth of Bouwinvest: “This kind of project is exactly what we aim for with our fund. Creating a living environment that enables seniors to continue living independently for as long as possible.” - INTERVIEW -