Brooklyn Park Develops “Age-Friendly” Action Plan
Minnesota is on the cusp of seeing unprecedented growth in the senior population. The number of people who turned 65 this decade is more than the previous three decades combined.
Cities are working now to prepare to better serve this growing population.
“Our aging population is our fastest growing population,” said Kelly Mertes, who works for the city of Brooklyn Park. “This will be the first time our aging population outnumbers the number of kids we have in school.”
This week the city council heard about a series of action plans that staff members have been developing over the past few years. Many of the projects have already been folded into routine work flow or incorporated into existing projects.
For example, one of the points included making city hall easier to navigate and access. This will be accomplished during the current remodel project. Other plans are as simple as reviewing the font used in city publications so they are easier to read.
The city believes steps like these can help encourage people to stay in Brooklyn Park as they grow older.
“We want to make sure Brooklyn Park is a livable community where people who are aging can live well in place,” said Mertes.
The city also partnered with the Alzheimer’s advocates to offer upcoming training opportunities for staff.
Brooklyn Park will be the fifth city to join the AARP Network of Age-Friendly communities. Maple Grove is already a member.