Photo by Sarah Ackerman.
The Upper West Side made the AARP’s list of top neighborhoods in the country for people 50 and over, coming in second to some neighborhood in Wisconsin no one’s ever heard of or cares about anyway.
The Upper West Side was credited for its “Great restaurants, world-class culture, easy access to gyms and Central Park jogging paths. Expensive housing, but a walkable neighborhood with cheap and convenient mass transit. Multigenerational community.”
Fair enough. All of this sets the neighborhood apart, and makes the Upper West Side a great place to grow old(er). About 22% of Upper West Siders are 60 or over, versus 17% citywide. But the most innovative aspect of the Upper West Side for the 50-plus crowd may be the community groups that have sprung up to help seniors form their own self-sustaining communities within the big city. Some of them are called NORCs for naturally occurring retirement communities. The Times has more on them here.
Project Open at Lincoln Towers offers services and classes, and groups like Bloomingdale Aging in Place have connected large groups of people, creating multi-generational communities that act as a social network and lifeline — all while allowing seniors to stay in their homes as they age.
So take note AARP. We deserve to be Number 1.