Published 10/16/2016 in The Columbus Dispatch
Ongoing articles in The Dispatch highlight the opportunities and challenges of growth and changing demographics in the Columbus region. Soon we will become Ohio’s largest metro population. With this in mind, it is important for our community to remember that all of our residents share in the prosperity of growth.
Central Ohio’s population of residents 65 years or older is expected to double in the next 35 years. To ensure that individuals of all ages can remain in their neighborhoods and live a high quality of life, the city of Columbus and the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission announced the creation of Age-Friendly Columbus.
It will assess the city through research, field work, and outreach. The assessment will provide a clear picture of where the city needs to improve. From these findings, a three-year action plan will be created, to make sure Columbus embraces age-friendliness as a core value.
I am excited to focus on our older adult population and, along with MORPC, I will listen to each of our residents, community and business leaders. Along with upcoming neighborhood audits, we are encouraging all 50-plus residents to complete the Age-Friendly survey which has been sent to a number of residents, but is also open to anyone.
As co-chairman with Fran Ryan, I invite all to participate in this important initiative by participating in the ongoing survey (deadline for completion is Oct. 31), or even hosting a small group discussion. I encourage residents to visit www.agefriendlycolumbus.org to learn more, take the survey, or sign up for the newsletter.
So many of you have participated already, whether on a committee, in a focus group, or by taking the survey. We continue to be amazed by the collaborative spirit that defines our city and sincerely thank all for their participation, opinions, and ideas.
Together we make Columbus an even better place to age.