How Walkable Neighbourhoods Help Seniors Stay Independent


You’ve probably heard about how Millennials are choosing walkable town and city centers over suburban, auto-centric neighbourhoods, preferring the freedom to walk to local shops and services over being stuck with a car. Car ownership is expensive, and for many younger people, it just doesn’t fit into their lifestyle.

But younger adults aren’t the only people who are looking for those features in the places they choose to call home. Though they may have spent much of their lives in areas that were designed around cars, especially as they sought cheaper homes with enough space to raise a family, as seniors get older they want walkable neighbourhoods too.

It’s not hard to see why so many older adults are looking for housing or senior apartments in areas where they can easily get around on their own two feet.

#1 Freedom to Go Out

At a certain point in their lives, sometimes older adults have to stop driving for their own and others’ safety. For someone who’s driven most of their lives, giving up the car can be a big culture change, and for seniors who live in car-centric built environments, it can lead to isolation.

Living in a walkable neighbourhood, they can enjoy easy access to shops and services without needing a vehicle or help from someone who has one. Walkable neighbourhoods make independence possible even after giving up a driver’s license.

Even seniors who have a robust network willing to help them get around should consider life without a driver’s license. It’s not always just about making sure you can get to the essentials. Sometimes, it’s knowing that you can go and treat yourself to a coffee or a piece of cake at the local café, and do it on your own schedule.

#2 Saving Money

Car ownership is expensive.  The average cost of car ownership is nearly $8,500 a year – a steep cost when you’re no longer working. When you’re retired, any way you can cut costs helps, and living in a walkable neighbourhood often means you can get by without one.

#3 Richer Community Life

Communities in walkable neighbourhoods are more tightly-knit and connective. On a basic level, it’s easier to meet people in an environment where you can walk from one place to another and linger in public or in third places that are easy to access. As seniors age and struggle more to meet friends and have social lives, living in a walkable neighbourhood can help them form and maintain better community connections.

Each of our residences across Canada are located in neighbourhoods that are walking distance to shops, restaurants, parks, banks, grocery stores, dental offices, medical offices, and other essential services. For example, our seniors housing in Calgary at Auburn Heights is located cross from the Calgary South Health Campus Hospital, and is close to shopping malls, the YMCA, Calgary Public Library and other essential services.

All Seniors Care chooses the location of its residences to allow independent residents the freedom to come and go as they please. To find out more about our senior apartments, click here and explore the amenities we offer and the neighbourhoods we share.

Before you making a decision about senior housing, take some time to explore the area around the reisdence. What’s nearby can be just as important as the amenities on offer inside.

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