Adding life to years
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Age-friendly Neighborhoods Initiative

Age-friendly Neighborhoods Initiative


From our surveys and consultations, older adults said that New York City is a City of neighborhoods and-as they have aged-the immediate area where they live has become more important to them. They also said that each of the City’s neighborhoods has its own strengths and shortcomings, and creative solutions must be developed organically in communities not just through uniform city-wide policy. To address these specific neighborhood concerns, the AFN initiative brings together leaders and resources of local businesses, non-profit organizations, City officials, and cultural, educational and religious institutions to think strategically and implement no-and low-cost improvements to make the neighborhood more inclusive of its older residents. The AFN initiative is the continuation and expansion of the earlier pilot programs of Aging Improvement Districts (AIDs).


Key facts

Main target group: Older people in general

Other target group(s): Older men, Older women, Older people living alone, People with mobility challenges, Younger people, Public sector, Private sector, Civil society organisations, Volunteers

Sector(s): Social protection

Other issues the Age-friendly practice aims to address:
  • Accessibility
  • Inequities

Contact details

Name: Goldman, Lindsay

Email address:

Preferred language(s): English

Age-friendly practice in detail (click to expand):

Engaging the wider community

Project lead: Local authorities

Older people’s involvement: Older people were consulted during the planning process

Details on older people’s involvement: The AFN initiative is a model which engages older adults by listening to their concerns and suggestions for how to improve their neighborhoods. Older adults in a specific community are brought together to harness the resources of area businesses, non-profit organizations, and cultural, educational, and religious institutions. The primary objective is to strategically make improvements to built environments, to tap into the knowledge of older adults, to increase access to services, and to capitalize on local assets so that our city’s neighborhoods are more inclusive of older adults.

Moving forward

Has the impact of this age-friendly practice been analysed: No

Expansion plans:
Currently in process to expand from 3 to 10 additional neighborhoods across the 5 boroughs; pending funding in future fiscal years from the New York City Council, the goal is to eventually expand the AFN initiative to all 51 Councilmanic Districts in the 5 boroughs.

Looking back

We have received very positive feedback.

Challenges of language (over 160 different languages in the City); challenge of acquiring a diverse age range.