AFS Blog

Age-Friendly Sarasota guided by lifelong community tenets

Posted on October 14, 2016 | by Kathy Black
Age-Friendly Sarasota guided by lifelong community tenets

Age-Friendly Sarasota aspires to be a lifelong community for people of all ages, life stages and abilities. This means that communities should work for all people -- whether they are age 8 or age 80 -- in all features and areas of life. According to Gil Penalosa, founder of 8-80 Cities, an organization improves the quality of life in communities by bringing citizens together to enhance mobility and public space.

Lifelong community tenets, representing the first “L” in our tagline: “FOR ALL AGES, ” represents an important guiding principle. The tenets support active, healthy, and engaged living and promote social, civic and economic participation across the life course of all people. This can be achieved in a variety of ways across the domains of livability including:


  • Outdoor Spaces and Public Buildings that accommodate people with varying sensory and mobility abilities



  • Housing that supports aging in place across an array of styles and price points



  • Social Participation that fosters holistic health – mental, physical, social and more



  • Civic Participation and Employment opportunities in multiple areas that support our individual and collective needs to live dignified lives



  • Respect and Social Inclusion in all aspects of community life



  • Communication and Information via a variety of means to educate and enrich our daily lives, needs, and preferences



  • Community Supports and Health Services that offer help and care to residents, friends and neighbors who face needs across the spectrum of daily life



  • Transportation options that meet a range of needs and preferences including physical abilities and economic means


Gil Penalosa, founder and chair of 8-80 Cities, states that livable communities start slowly. They start with traffic slowed down to 20 mph in neighborhoods to make pedestrians safe whether they are 8 or 80 years old. They start with bike lanes that are physically separated from roadways so people who would have never considered biking feel safe pedaling their toddlers to school. They start with public spaces that celebrate public life, including parks where people can gather, play and rest. And they have clean, fast, public transportation that gives people choices about how to get around.


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