An age-friendly city prioritizes access, inclusivity, and improved quality of life for all residents. By ensuring that the urban landscape is accessible to people with disabilities and seniors, age-friendly city planning benefits all residents, allows the opportunity to age in place, and is able to ensure a diverse community.
Why age-friendly planning?
The demographics of aging signify a radical shift in what it means to age in America: living longer than ever before, socioeconomic and racial disparities in health outcomes, challenging long-term care options, the increase in “encore careers” and the largest aging population this country has ever seen.
Not unique to the United States, in general the globe itself is getting older. Countries such as Japan, Cuba, Germany, the Netherlands, and China are all grappling with a rapidly aging population and the impacts that will have.
With urban planning, we mean to ensure that communities and cities are age-friendly, allowing people to age and remain in their homes for as long as possible. In addition to housing, the age-friendly city considers the location of bus stops, the condition of sidewalks, crosswalk timing, and access to safe and enriching public spaces as all important components. When independent living is no longer possible, the age-friendly city ensures that people are able to remain within the community of their choosing and that their long-term housing options are affordable, safe, and preserves their dignity and independence.
Our work focuses on ensuring that communities are accessible to residents of all ages and all abilities. Thoughtful design aimed at including elders and folks with disabilities within the public realm benefits us all – consider the last time you took the elevator instead of stairs, utilized the automatic doors, the larger bathroom stall, or those handy curb cuts. A slower crosswalk benefits gazing tourists, a mother pushing a stroller and carrying groceries, as well as a senior with a walker.
Several common threads tie my professional interests including, housing, participatory planning, research, design, and project management. With a master’s in urban planning from UCLA, I’m passionate about ensuring: age-friendly communities, vibrant public spaces, community participation, equitable access to food, and diverse affordable housing. I’m also a certified ombudsman, am an aspiring backyard urban farmer, and a huge fan of public radio.
- Community development: including, grant management, community needs assessment
- Construction renovation: including, developing scope of work, creating timelines, budgets, and managing contractors
- Communications and marketing: including, establishing branding guidelines, developing communication strategies, website management, community based outreach
- Fundraising: including, grant management, donor relations, event management, and corporate sponsorships
- Aging in Place: including, home safety modifications, hoarding and cluttering,project management, program development, and evaluations
- Resiliency: including, community participation, disaster planning, and earthquake preparedness