To live independently, seniors have to keep a mobile lifestyle. In most communities, this means elderly people must own and drive a car or face isolation and dependence on others. This reliance on the automobile, homes located many miles from public services like grocery stores and entertainment, and gaps in public transportation systems are major hurdles to the elderly who wish to age in their own communities.
Compounding the problem are road design and signage that are not user friendly and that can be confusing to most drivers, regardless of age. But with few other options, such as easily accessible, convenient, and affordable community-wide public transportation, It’s little wonder that many seniors are extremely reluctant to give up their car keys, even when driving has become challenging or unsafe.
Currently, the focus is on preserving and improving driving skills, but increasing numbers of seniors will lack the mobility they need unless communities, business, government, and public sectors work together to develop innovative solutions for efficient, convenient, and varied forms of transportation.
As their first project for PAFC, the mobility group arranged with the Fort Collins Parks and Recreation department to offer two separate days of travel training through the Fort Collins Senior Center. Participants rode the Max as well as a connecting bus line, with a stopover for lunch in Old Town. A travel trainer from the City accompanied each group to explain the system and answer questions .
Followup projects include working with other communities in Larimer County to provide similar trainings on local transportation systems.
Chairperson: Gary Thomas
Members: Jeff Arduino, Emma Belmont, Martin Carcasson, Jill Couch, Greg Daley, Gina DeBell, Ruth Fletcher-Carter, Bente James, Joanne Johnson, Amy Lewin, Andrea Liebl, Katy Mason, Elnora McCloughan, Lori Mitchell, Leslie Roy, Dawn Sakes, Diane Smith, Katie Stieber, Brian Wells