AARP's livable communities program has one goal. To help communities work better and become great places to live for everyone. What makes a community "livable" varies by location, but some of the attributes on the list are access to transportation and public spaces, a range of housing options, and community engagement.
The livable communities program has TONS of resources on their webpage AARP.org/livable . From access to their weekly newsletter, which comes out on Wednesdays, to a document called Where We Live , which provides an annual report on the state of communities, to a map of what communities are involved...and so much more, check it out!
Funding for the changes necessary to make a community more livable can come from a variety of sources. Some can be as simple as thoughtful planning about existing public investments in infrastructure. Talking to your local planning committee to see what is on the docket for upgrades and asking your city government to be involved are great ways to start.
One of the biggest takeaways for me was the results of the 2018 Home and community preferences survey. Danielle tells us that ~7% of respondents have accessory dwelling units or "granny flats", but ~33% would like to build one. With the number of people over 65 increasing every day, I can only see this number increasing. In order to see these units become accessible to more homeowners it's going to take rezoning or perhaps policy change. For the one off, it can require a variance. Some may not want to see a change to their neighborhood or town. But there are pluses for both sides to having these units. Having your aging parent in the backyard vs. across the city (or country) will make your life easier. Having your parents close by can provide a source of care for your children. And finding a space that can accommodate both your and your parents, can allow you to live in a home or area that you might not otherwise be able to afford. All things to consider.
Find out about their national conference, happening November 12-14 2018 in Charlotte, NC. This conference has ~100 slots open to the public. You can learn more here: 6th Annual AARP Livable Communities Conference 2018
Find AARP's livable communities on social:
Facebook: AARP livable communities