Aging in Place Track well attended at National Planning Conference

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The American Planning Association (APA) held the annual National Planning Conference in Chicago April 13-April 17.  There were six aging-focused sessions and two facilitated discussions.  Three of those events were selected and sponsored by specific APA divisions.  Planning professionals were clearly looking for information on meeting the needs of older residents, and when given the opportunity, had much to discuss.  Some planners told of struggles to get their communities to eliminate zoning restrictions on Accessory Dwelling Units, many using Portland, OR as a model for change in their communities.  Dr. Mildred Warner assembled a panel to speak on Gender + Aging, sponsored by the Women in Planning Division.  In the photo, Jana Lynott of the AARP Public Policy Institute, leads the session by discussing the statistics.  At another session, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to again hear the knowledgeable and engaging Ruth Finkelstein of the NY Academy of Medicine speak on the successes of the Age-Friendly NYC program.  Her example of a no-cost age-friendly community intervention–scheduling a section of a public pool for seniors only time while the rest of the pool is dedicated to swimming lessons–was an eye-opening and thought-provoking example for the attendees.  See other blog posts for summaries from APA sessions.