A livable community is defined as one that “allows all people to maintain their independence and quality of life as they age and retire.” AARP produced this report to determine the livability of the Greater Kingsport, Tenn. Area by conducting a survey to gather perceptions of older adults regarding their feelings toward the livability of Greater Kingsport. The report analyzes “gaps” between community attributes that members say are important to them and whether or not these attributes exist.
To understand the livability of the Greater Kingsport Area, a survey was completed by 1,331 AARP members age 50 years and older in the area. The survey respondents were asked a series of questions to understand better their perceptions of their community’s livability. The AARP members being surveyed identified certain attributes that they felt to be important but did not exist in their community. Respondents reported that they could not safely walk to many places they needed to get to, like the grocery store, because of a community design that limited their mobility. Successful aging in place requires concepts and features that make services accessible for older non-drivers.
Other report highlights include:
- Gaps were identified in terms of well-maintained sidewalks, home repair services for older adults, and grocery stores in close proximity to neighborhoods.
- Seventy-seven percent of AARP member respondents said it was extremely important for them to remain in their community as long as possible while they age.
- Nearly 60 percent of respondents stated that their current homes needed some kind of modification to enable them to age in place.
How to Use
The report provides a thorough look at the older adult population’s perceptions and opinions of livability in the Greater Kingsport Area. The data collected in the AARP survey and presented in this report can be utilized by city officials, city planners, and volunteer organizations to gain a better understanding of the features older adults perceive as important in a livable community. The report offers guidance for improving community infrastructure and services that will accommodate the changing needs of the older adult population.
View full report: A Livable Community Survey of the Greater Kingsport, TN Area: A Place to Live, Work, and Play for a Lifetime – 2010 (PDF – 405 KB)