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Great Places to Live in the U.S.

En español | Most Americans would prefer to age in place, staying in the city or town where they already live, have raised families and made friends. But our hometowns aren’t always suited for older lifestyles, structurally or socially. Many cities across the U.S. are working to change that, putting in place initiatives to make life better for older residents. The AARP Bulletin dispatched journalists to five cities that are winning acclaim for their innovative work toward increased livability, to discover what every community can learn from their efforts.

Open air restaurant along the Sacramento River in the evening with a view of the tower bridge in the background

West Sacramento, California

This suburb has turned itself into a destination community, innovatively tackled its transportation problem and broke free from the “senior center” model for older residents.

People walking on stone arch bridge across the Mississippi River in Minneapolis with the city skyline above


This Midwestern city is attracting older workers to good career opportunities, is changing decades-old housing policies and is making mini-communities within a metropolis.

A converted airstream tralier has become the grow plant store in an open lot in Fort Worth, Texas

Fort Worth, Texas

This community redeveloped an urban neighborhood to combat suburban flight, created “blue zones” to promote healthier living conditions and is helping older residents become entrepreneurs.

Extravagant playground area with towers and slides called adventure place in Tulsa Oklahoma

Tulsa, Oklahoma

This small city has engaged the community to identify solutions and led a push to use data analysis to solve problems.

View of a street intersection in an urban neighborhood


This expensive city has worked to reduce housing costs, while conducting surveys and listening sessions to assess other needs of older residents.

More Great Places to Live

These communities have launched initiatives that are making life better