For the fifth annual AARP Community Challenge, AARP received more than 3,500 applications from nonprofits and government entities, resulting in a highly competitive selection process.
Nearly $3.2 million is being distributed to fund 244 quick-action projects across the country, helping urban, rural and suburban communities make immediate improvements and jumpstart long-term progress to support residents of all ages.
Massachusetts communities brought home four of the awardees of the nationwide program, which are listed below. Continue reading
The Mass. Department of Transportation (MassDOT) announced the award of $6.5 million total to cities and towns which applied for funding from the Shared Streets and Spaces Grant Program. Among those are several projects that are inclusive of older adults, thanks to bonus points that encourage applicants to consider improving the built environment around councils on aging, senior housing, and other public spaces. Continue reading
The Baker Administration recently announced its Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) Capital Plan, a $2.655 billion plan that makes substantial investments in critical priorities including housing, transportation, climate resiliency, health and human services, and education to promote economic growth and opportunity.
Much of these investments will help communities become more age-friendly, including a continuation of the MassDOT Shared Streets and Spaces program, Complete Streets, and support for affordable housing. Continue reading
At a time of increasing interest in walking and bicycling for transportation and recreational purposes, improving safety, access, and comfort for these modes on the parkways of metro Boston represents an opportunity to dramatically expand the regional greenway network. Continue reading
MetroCommon2050 is Greater Boston’s next long-range regional plan. It’s a plan for all of the 101 cities and towns and countless neighborhoods of the region of the Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC).
Through research and community engagement, MAPC gathered opinions from thousands throughout the region, including people of different ages, backgrounds, racial and ethnic backgrounds, walks of life, and perspectives. This allowed us to confirm that the goals in MetroCommon reflect Greater Boston’s hopes and dreams and that our view of the problems that need to be solved is correct. Continue reading
A new toolkit developed by AARP Livable Communities and the Congress for the New Urbanism called Enabling Better Places: A Handbook for Improved Neighborhoods provides options for communities to consider as they identify and select small-scale, incremental policy changes that can be made without overhauling entire zoning codes and land use policies.
This toolkit could be especially useful in the relatively new context of the Housing Choice Law, which reduced the number of votes required to enact certain kinds of zoning ordinances and bylaws from a ⅔ supermajority to a simple majority, among other changes. Continue reading
Creative placemaking is an approach that deeply engages the arts, culture, and creativity—especially from underrepresented communities—in planning and designing transportation projects to better reflect and celebrate local culture, heritage, and values. Continue reading
Building partnerships through collaboration between assistive technology programs and long-term services and supports (LTSS) agencies is one way to expand awareness and facilitate access to AT devices and services.
The AARP Public Policy Institute produced a report in collaboration with the Administration on Community Living and State Assistive Technology Act programs on assistive technology (AT) program partnerships and innovations in states. The report provides valuable information and ideas on partnerships that can improve quality of life for those using assistive technology. Continue reading
The most dangerous metro areas and states for people walking have been identified in Dangerous by Design 2021. The number of people struck and killed while walking has gone up 45 percent in a decade, and people of color, older adults, and people walking in low-income neighborhoods were killed at significantly higher rates. Continue reading
In the past week, the state has announced the latest grant awards for MassDOT’s Shared Winter Streets and Spaces program, Affordable Housing Development, and Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) – all of which include multiple projects that support older adults.
All of the following award announcements are great examples for age- and dementia friendly communities looking to address housing, transportation and community services.