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Breakout Sessions: Wednesday, November 14

2018 AARP Livable Communities National Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina

Sessions are listed in alphabetical order. The bracketed text indicates the conference track.


Attitudes, Insights and Mindsets:
Results From Recent Livable Communities Research

  • [Putting it All Together] Research is key to building communities that support older residents and promote their quality of life, independence, wellness and active participation in the community. In this session, research from two recent AARP projects will be discussed. Project Catalyst/IDEO human-centered design provides insights about four mindsets representing older adults at risk of isolation. Key points to be covered are: 1. How marketing to seniors goes unanswered, 2. How decline is more terrifying than death, 3. How healthy aging is grounded in skillful improvisation, and 4. How technology and professional caregivers are for operational tasks while loved ones are for emotional ones. New research from the 2018 AARP Home & Community Preferences Survey (a national survey of adults age 18 or older including multicultural samples among African-Americans, Hispanic-Latino/as and LGBT) provides useful insights about the wants and needs of older adults and how they livable communities can positively contribute to their overall health and well-being, and keep them actively engaged and involved in the community.

Creating a New Livable Neighborhood:
Engaging New Partners, Influencers and the Public

  • [Putting it All Together] As communities grow, neighborhoods are being developed in environmentally-impacted areas. New partnerships, engagement strategies and conversations must be initiated and sustained with many stakeholders. Join the #Innovation team from Des Moines that is developing Gray's Station, a 75-acre neighborhood in the downtown area of the fastest-growing community in the Midwest. Learn how this livable and age-friendly neighborhood came to be designed for all ages. See how the mixed-use neighborhood design encourages mobility by incorporating greenways, walking trails, cycle tracks, and a walking bridge connection to an adjacent 167-acre city park and 100-acre lake. The development is also sensitive to environmental needs through a transformation of both wet and dry stormwater basins into a wetland park system. To engage with residents, Gray's Station used many of the community listening strategies featured in the AARP Roadmap to Livability series. 

Engaging Communities: Hands-On Design Collaboration With Mixopoly

  • [Engaging People] The Mixopoly workshop is a how-to for designing in physical form neighborhoods that are fine-grained, mixed-density, sustainable, supportive, age-friendly and safe. Mixopoly is an evolution of successful historical models and Mixopoly neighborhood design patterns incorporate an assortment of housing types as well as parks, open spaces and "green light imprint" infrastructure. With Mixology, housing ranges from economical rentals to high-value owner-occupied homes, providing a broad choice of price-points that are both market-rate and affordable. When incorporated into each block, a true mix of occupant incomes is present. From a regional perspective, Mixopoly provides a full range of mixed-density, from rural to urban conditions, forming a sustainable region of city neighborhoods, towns, villages and rural hamlets.

Financing Livable Communities By Ballot: Opportunities and Challenges

  • [Engaging Policymakers] More states and local governments are using ballot measures to raise taxes or issue bonds to finance their livable community projects. However, public support for these measures is not always a given, particularly when the project is complex and the opposition is mobilized. This session will help participants learn how to gauge when the time is right to support a ballot measure, to successfully manage working with a broad-based coalition, and to realistically evaluate and counter opposition. Case studies, research results and direct action organizing techniques will be discussed

Less Is More: The Village Network Comes to North Carolina

  • [Putting it All Together] At a time when economic, demographic and social factors point to a crescendo of challenges, traditional care models cannot fully meet the needs of older adults. This session, moderated by Village to Village President Mandy Summerson, and coordinated by villages in North Carolina, shares information in three tracks (key characteristics of a village, success stories, the opportunity for each village to be unique) to evoke questions in those areas. MaryAnne Hammond of the Davidson Village Network describes the current state of aging in America, the Silver Tsunami, and the lack of preparedness and awareness by many in governments about the importance of proactively addressing the needs of the aging population. Karen Metzger of Fearington Cares frames unmet needs realized in a more rural area and the need for partnerships when the resource level is small. Jim Kimbler of the Charlotte Village Network describes the Charlotte village, which started as a group exploring aging solutions in the LGBT community and has grown into a village serving much of Charlotte with a current focus on ethnic diversity in its growth strategy.

Livable Communities: Statewide Initiatives to Create Communities for All

  • [Putting it All Together] The Communities for a Lifetime program of the Florida Department of Elder Affairs (DOEA) works with the state's cities, towns and counties and is encouraging each to join the AARP Network of Age-Friendly States and Communities. The DOEA’s Dementia Care and Cure Initiative shares the vision of creating safe and nurturing communities. In Massachusetts, which was the second state to join the AARP age-friendly network, age- and dementia-friendly community efforts are working together on a statewide action plan. The Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative will discuss the organization’s work with government agencies and key partners.

Rural Communities: Engaging People, Partners and Policymakers Through Regional Approaches

  • [Putting it All Together] Age-friendly communities share many traits, but urban and rural environments require different approaches. The residents of rural communities tend to be older than people in urban areas and they have fewer financial resources, higher poverty rates and longer travel distances. Consequently, it's imperative for rural communities to leverage community assets and engage various groups in order to meet the needs of an aging population. Regional approaches help alleviate some of these challenges by pooling resources and bringing people together. This session is geared toward regional approaches to rural, age-friendly work. A successful age-friendly campaign involves buy-in from locals, businesses, community organizations and elected leaders. Panelists from rural communities will share how they are effectively engaging residents, building partnerships and advocating for age-friendly communities.

The Future of Transportation: Universal Mobility as a Service

  • [Engaging Partners] Emerging technologies present an unprecedented opportunity to vastly expand mobility for the nation's 100 million non-drivers. While driverless cars have received the most media attention, the impending disruption is much larger and could involve a shift in the entire ecosystem of transportation, from personally-owned vehicles to accessing transportation from a menu of options. In The Future of Transportation, Jana Lynott of the AARP Public Policy Institute offers a vision for a future centered around a concept she calls "Universal Mobility as a Service," where everyone in the community is served regardless of age, disability, race/ethnicity, income or geographic location. A discussion among attendees, panelists and the moderator will explore tools for "Universal MaaS" implementation and the roles local actors can play to make this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity a reality.

2018 AARP Livable Communities National Conference 

To return to the main conference page, visit or bookmark: AARP.org/Livable2018

  • Find information and materials from our prior conferences:
    20172016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013
A red pin marks Charlotte, North Carolina, site of the 2018 AARP Livable Communities National Conference

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