In 1995, the quaint westerm German town of Arnsberg listened to 28,000 respondents over 50 years of age who shared their visions of what a dignified, respectful and active old age looks like. It culminated in the creation of the Department of Future Aging that, with two staff, had succeeded in creating a city where senior-oriented planning isn’t just woven into the social fabric of the city but the physical design as well. At the core is a design philosophy that focuses on creating programs that capitalize on what seniors can offer, and not on what seniors can no longer do. The result? At least for Hanni Borzel, who relocated to Arnsberg after her husband passed away, life in Arnsberg has not only given her ways to occupy herself fruitfully in old age but also a good circle of friends.

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