Canadian residents are becoming more and more excited over the construction of a new village in British Columbia.

This isn’t just any village, however – it is a place specifically designed for seniors suffering from dementia.

The community, which will simply be called The Village, will host a few dozen cottages and shared living spaces for up to 72 dementia patients.

Construction workers started building The Village in Langley earlier this week. Elroy Jespersen, who is the vice-president of special projects at Verve Senior Living and the mastermind behind the Village, told CTV News that he wanted dementia patients to feel the same amount of independence as their able-bodied counterparts. The Village will give them a controlled space in which to live their lives, free of the stressful feeling of always “running into a locked door”.

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He told CTV: “We believe that it’s really important for people to be connected to nature and life and the outdoors.”

The initiative draws inspiration from Hogeweyk, a similarly-designed community in the Netherlands that was declared the world’s first village for dementia patients. The compound features everything from supermarkets and stores, to restaurants and gardens.

While The Village currently is being developed through private funding, and will be completed by spring of next year, its organizers hope that the government will eventually assist with some of the resident’s costs.

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