June 7, 2004

Retirees Enjoy ‘Smart Growth’ Communities

"It is the closest we could get to what we left behind," says John Hopton about retiring in a traditional neighborhood development, or TND, in Lynchburg, Va.

TNDs are a modern interpretation of an old idea: the self-contained neighborhood or small town with mixed housing types and diverse populations - much like a Norman Rockwell painting brought to life. They are characterized by high- density building; small lot sizes; and a walkable, compact size. They also feature commercial and civic components, so residents can buy what they need and take part in community activities without leaving the neighborhood.

So starts this Christian Science Monitor article, which talks about how appealing walkable communities are for older residents, as opposed to gated senior ghettos where motorized transportation is needed for every conceivable errand.

"The compact, walkable settlement pattern, with a mix of uses and a variety of housing types, is ideal for older households," Todd Zimmerman of Zimmerman/Volk Associates told the Monitor. His firm analyzed more than 200 traditional neighborhoods and urban residential neighborhoods in 42 states.

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