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The Livability Index: Great Neighborhoods for All Ages

AARP recently launched a new online tool for checking the livability score of any location in the U.S. — and finding and creating communities that benefit people of all ages

The Livability Index is a signature initiative of the Public Policy Institute to measure the quality of life in American communities across multiple dimensions: housing, transportation, neighborhood characteristics, environment, health, opportunity, and civic and social engagement.

An interactive, easily navigated website, the Livability Index allows users to compare communities, adjust scores based on personal preferences and learn how to take action to make their own communities move livable.

Use the tool by visiting

What Does the Livability Index Do?

The Livability Index helps users better understand their communities and make decisions about future needs. The index can be used in several ways.

Here are just a few examples:

Livable Communities


A county executive wants to know how to meet the housing needs of older adults. She can see how her community performs for each of the housing metrics relative to the national average and learn about policy and programmatic interventions that could address areas of concern.

Livable Communities


The director of a nonprofit organization wants to show the need for transportation services in the community. He can view data on transit service available to various neighborhoods in the community and connect to resources explaining how transit is typically funded.

Livable Communities


A health official is interested in exploring how the built environment may influence health. She can see the relative rates of obesity and smoking on a map and then check whether each neighborhood in a county has access to grocery stores and farmers’ markets.

Related Resources

Is This a Good Place to Live? Measuring Community Quality of Life for All Ages

This report explores the meaning of livability, examines previous efforts to evaluate the livability of communities and describes lessons learned by PPI as part of its work to measure community livability.

What is Livable? Community Preferences of Older Adults

This report highlights findings from an AARP PPI survey of more than 4,500 adults age 50 and older to understand general preferences for community livability and how those preferences differ within the diverse population of older adults, including age, income, physical ability, driver status, race and ethnicity, and other factors.

What Is a Livable Community, and How Do We Measure One?

Rodney Harrell, Ph.D., director of the AARP Public Policy Institute's livability initiative, discusses the "What is Livable?" survey results.