MORPC and City of Columbus Kick Off Age-Friendly Initiative 

March 24, 2016

Central Ohio’s population of 65 years or older is expected to double over the next 35 years. In order to ensure that individuals of all ages can remain in their neighborhoods and live a high quality of life, the City of Columbus and MORPC have announced the creation of Age-Friendly Columbus.

insight2050 has revealed that older adults are seeking walkable communities and a different style of home – smaller and in mixed-use neighborhoods. This single demographic change will have a huge impact on housing, transportation, and employment. Age Friendly Columbus, is a major first step to make sure that older adults can live an active and safe lifestyle.

“Two years ago we began the Infant Mortality Taskforce, and I am thrilled to announce our dedication to the other end of the age spectrum,” Mayor Andrew Ginther said. “Together, these powerful projects and the many residents and professionals involved, are truly making Columbus a great city for all ages.”

Over a period of two years and through the lens of eight domains as outlined by AARP in partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO), this project will assess the age-friendliness of the City of Columbus through research, field work, and outreach. The city-wide assessment will provide a clear picture of where the City needs to improve.

From these findings, a 3-year city-wide action plan will be created, to make sure Columbus embraces age-friendliness as a core value. The plan will include both site and service-specific action items for Columbus, but also recommendations that are broader, policy-based, and applicable to other communities around the region. This initiative will create a broad coalition among cross-sector stakeholders and a strong foundation for continuous improvements.

“This comprehensive plan will work with older adults to identify the opportunities as well as the challenges with aging,” said MORPC Executive Director William Murdock. “It will provide thoughtful, achievable recommendations for Columbus which will be applicable to communities throughout the region, so our region can grow into an even more livable place for people of all ages.”

The Age-Friendly Columbus advisory council, will be led by Councilman Michael Stinziano, serving as chair, and former council member Fran Ryan serving as co-chair.

Age-Friendly Columbus is supported and funded by The Osteopathic Heritage Foundation; the Central Ohio Area Agency on Aging; the Franklin County Office on Aging; The Columbus Foundation; National Church Residences, and AARP Ohio.

For more information on Age-Friendly Columbus, please visit our website.