Boomers become pre-seniors

In reporting on a study from the Brookings Institution on the demographics of the impending "senior tsunami," the New York Times focused on one of the study's findings, the effect of the aging population on the nation's suburbs. It quoted the author, William H. Frey: "Suburbs, which previously were considered youthful and family-friendly parts of America, will, as more seniors age in place, become a fast-graying part of our national landscape."

Other findings:
  • Aging boomers make pre-seniors (ages 55-64) this decade's fastest-growing age group
  • Pre-seniors are increasing rapidly everywhere, esp. in economically dynamic Sun Belt areas such as Las Vegas, Austin, Atlanta, and Dallas
  • Seniors (ages 65+) are growing fastest in the Intermountain West and South Atlantic states
  • In states where senior populations will grow fastest, "aging in place" rather than migration will drive this growth
A capsule conclusion:
Today's seniors and pre-seniors are upending traditional notions of how and where Americans spend their later years. The rise of boomer populations in suburban and Sun Belt locations will create new demand for senior-oriented housing and amenities. As older populations age in place, however--especially in the suburbs of slower-growing metropolitan areas--public policies must respond to the new stresses they will exert on health, transportation, and social-support systems.

Mapping the Growth of Older America (pdf, 28pp/1MB)

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