Edmonton needs more seniors’ housing to keep up with demographic changes. The number of people stating their age as 60 and up in the 2009 municipal census was 106,914, or 13.7% of the total population.
In the 2014 census, the same group numbers 128,071, or 14.6% of the total population.
That’s an increase in actual numbers of 20% from 2009. In Edmonton there’s a particular need for additional affordable housing for seniors on fixed incomes.
The City of Edmonton has strategies to create housing options for all residents, including seniors, utilizing vacant building sites declared surplus by school boards.
Eight of these surplus school sites have been identified for construction of new housing developments for older adults. These sites are in Blue Quill, Caernarvon, Kiniski Gardens, Miller, Overlanders, Sakaw and Wedgewood Heights.
Surplus school sites dedicated for seniors' housing are transit accessible and are near parks and amenities. Seniors' housing on these sites will allow many seniors to downsize from detached homes while remaining in their community, close to their friends and within a familiar neighbourhood.
As seniors transition out of their homes, these properties become available for new families, bringing renewed vibrancy and sustainability to local businesses and services. Creating ways for older generations to remain in their neighbourhood adds richness and stability to the social fabric.
Transforming these building sites into seniors’ housing is dependent upon funding availability and arrangements with the Alberta government as well as community partnerships.
Community organizations interested in helping develop seniors housing in any of the program locations are invited to contact the City.