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Maintaining Independence and Quality of Life: A Livable Community Survey in Murfreesboro, Tennessee – 2012

Overview

The 50+ residents of Murfreesboro are deeply rooted in their community, as 37 percent of respondents have lived there for more than 20 years. Perceived as a livable community, 67 percent say “their community is an excellent or very good place for older people to live.” AARP Tennessee conducted this survey in 2011 to determine the livability of communities for the aging demographic.

Key Points

AARP Tennessee commissioned this survey to better understand the mindset of people age 50+ when considering to live in their current Murfreesboro, Tenn. community. A total of 527 respondents, reflecting an accurate representation of the US population, completed the mail survey. The questionnaire strove to identify community satisfaction, current housing structures, and required home modifications to maintain residency, transportation needs, and caregiving roles, as well as identify areas of gap between needs and current services.

Key survey findings:

  1. The top community features of importance were safe neighborhoods, well-designed and maintained streets, and services to help maintain independence.
  2. Most important neighborhood services included home health aide or visiting nurse, home repair services for low-income or older people, and transportation services.
  3. The largest gap in features between what is important to residents and what exists in communities are sidewalks and dependable transportation. The biggest gap in services is a service that helps low-income or older people with home repairs.

How to Use

This survey provides city planners and local government officials a planning tool for an aging population by outlining satisfaction barriers to independence and increased community engagement, as well as gaps for successful community planning for an older person. Transportation officials can use this data to create safer environments for pedestrians and identify methods to reduce costs for senior public transportation needs. Additionally, this survey is a thorough resource and case study for other localities determining the needs of an aging population.

View full report: Maintaining Independence and Quality of Life: A Livable Community Survey in Murfreesboro, Tennessee – 2012 (PDF – 972 KB)