Aging in Place, Stuck without Options: Fixing the Mobility Crisis Threatening the Baby Boom Generation

Only a small percentage of Americans move after they reach retirement age, according to demographic researchers, meaning most will “age in place” in neighborhoods where daily activities require frequent car trips. With rising life expectancies, America’s largest generation will also be the oldest ever. Inevitably, aging experts note, a large share will find that their ability to navigate by vehicle diminishes or disappears over time. These millions of older adults will need affordable alternatives to driving in order to maintain their independence as long as possible. Absent access to affordable travel options, seniors face isolation, a reduced quality of life and possible economic hardship. Whether seniors have access to transportation options depends both on where in the country they live, as well as where they reside within a metropolitan region. To gauge the emerging transportation issues for aging Americans, Transportation for America commissioned the Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) to analyze the adequacy of public transportation service for 241 metropolitan areas with a population of 65,000 or more. The analysis considered the total number of public transit lines and stops – bus routes and rail and ferry stations – in a given location, as well as the number of seniors living in that area in 2000, and their likely numbers in 2015. Within the communities examined in this report more than 11.5 million Americans 65 and older lived with “poor” transit access in 2000. If most seniors get their wish to “age in place,” by 2015, this analysis shows that this figure will increase to more than 15.5 million older Americans, meaning a substantial majority of that population will be faced with declining mobility options.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Maps; Photos; Tables;
  • Pagination: 56p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01345025
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: Jul 20 2011 7:25AM