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Communities by Design – Not Default – Part 1

Communities by Design – Not Default – Part 1

There is much talk about “aging in place of choice.” The keyword is choice. In the Report on the State of Public Health in Canada, our Chief Public Health Officer offered this definition: “Aging in place of choice is the ability of individuals to choose to live in their own communities for as long as possible, and to have access to home and community services that will support this ability.”   Why do you live where you live? Perhaps your choice is based on: • lifestyle, • access to amenities, commercial and professional services, • walkability, • closeness to family and friends, • proximity to schools, hospitals, and your place of worship. Some people thrive on the energy of downtown, activity and people, while others need their back door to open into the peace and tranquility of the great outdoors. Regardless of the reasons, we know that how we live is directly related to where we live. It’s the ‘how’ that impacts and informs our quality of life. This principle remains true as we transition through all our life stages. Where, why, and how may be complicated when partners want different things – especially in later years. I witnessed this personally and first-hand with Mary and John. They have been married for 60 years. Together they built a successful family business, and John was unyielding about continuing to live in their large and stunning home overlooking a breath-taking ocean view. Their adult children had taken over the day-to-day demands of the business. Every morning though, John established himself at the kitchen table, reviewed and signed-off on business work quotes,...