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Complete Streets and Aging - Karen Alexander

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Complete Streets and Aging - Karen Alexander

  1. 1. Complete Streets… What’s Aging Got to Do with It? Karen Alexander Managing Director, NJTIP October 21, 2013
  2. 2. The Mission of NJTIP @ Rutgers NJTIP @ Rutgers increases the independence and self-sufficiency of people with disabilities, older adults and others by empowering them to use the public transit system safely and independently.
  3. 3. What is Aging In Place? “People living as independently as possible as they age and having access to resources and services that enable them to stay in their communities as their needs change.” - National Aging in Place Council
  4. 4. Age-Friendly City Topic Areas: World Health Organization
  5. 5. Asset Based Community Development Considers local assets as the primary building blocks of sustainable community development. Building on the skills of local residents, the power of local associations, and the supportive functions of local institutions, asset-based community development draws upon existing community strengths to build stronger, more sustainable communities for the future. - Asset Based Community Development Institute, School of Education and Social Policy, Northwestern University
  6. 6. Defining Complete Streets “Complete Streets are for everyone. They are designed and operated to enable safe access for all users, including pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders of all ages and abilities.” - National Complete Streets Coalition
  7. 7. Different Language, Shared Values • • • • • Inclusion Pluralism Participation Proactive Change More modes = increased independence
  8. 8. “Aging” = Three Cohorts • The Greatest Generation (born 1901-1924) • Silent Generation (born 1925 -1945) • Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964)
  9. 9. Age-Related Changes Impact Mobility • Declining vision • Decreased physical fitness and flexibility • Reduced ability to focus • Increased reaction time
  10. 10. Aging + Complete Streets • Population shifts – Growth in 65+ • Pedestrian fatalities – disproportionate among elderly • Driving Retirement and interest in mobility alternatives • Respects long-time residents, who want to “age in place”
  11. 11. What Towns Made the “Top Ten” List? • • • • • Maywood* Cranford* Tinton Falls Cape May* East Rutherford * Complete Streets Municipality • • • • • Carlstadt Kenilworth Rochelle Park Hanover Union
  12. 12. Double Whammies Cranford Cape May Maywood
  13. 13. 8 Things Your Community Can Do to Age Well • • • • • • • • Tap into elder expertise Engage multiple sectors* Recognize elders as economic contributors* Ensure older residents know about resources Adopt an “age is everything” approach to planning* Advocate for public transit improvements* Increase access to health and social opportunities* Work towards supportive housing * Aligns with Complete Streets agenda
  14. 14. If you build it with them, they will come… Getting on the bus and walking the walk
  15. 15. Dirty Little Secret “The dirty little secret on this planning is that, from my point of view, anything you design that will facilitate access, engagement, safety, enjoyment, and participation by older people turns out to be good for all age groups.” - Linda Fried, Dean Mailman School of Public Health Columbia University
  16. 16. Contact Information Karen J. Alexander, MPA Managing Director, NJTIP @ Rutgers Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey 33 Livingston Avenue New Brunswick, New Jersey 08901 karen.alexander@njtip.rutgers.edu Phone (848) 932-2831 Fax (732) 932-3714

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