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AARP Urges a NO vote on Measure B in the City of San Jose

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By 2035 the United States will be a country comprised of more people older than 65 than people under 18. That reality motivates AARP every day to ask questions about how we are adjusting to this coming change. Are we building communities that include housing for all income levels, accessible and affordable transportation options, safe parks and public spaces, networks to prevent social isolation, and so on? These components not only benefit older adults, they create great places for people of all ages and all abilities to live and thrive.  Through an extensive analysis process, AARP has concluded Measure B does not address the above mentioned qualities.

AARP is therefore actively opposing Measure B in the City of San Jose. AARP believes, if passed, Measure B will result in housing that is unaffordable and inaccessible, among other negative impacts.

We certainly need to build new housing, but we need to do so strategically and in a way that allows individuals who desperately need somewhere to live the opportunity to find a home. Luxury housing should not be our focus. Instead, we must encourage housing that is affordable and accessible, and is part of a community for people of all ages and life stages.

AARP believes that housing developed under Measure B would not only be unaffordable to the average resident in San Jose, it would also lack “age-friendly” features, such as access to transportation. The proposed building site in the Evergreen area is not served by public transit and is not walkable. As we have learned, the creation of “senior” housing in such areas often leads to negative health consequences resulting from residents being more sedentary and/or isolated, including depression, dementia, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.

If Measure B is passed, it will also significantly reduce transparency. The measure will remove community outreach requirements currently in place for major land use developments throughout the city. This will weaken the public’s ability to offer input on the design, implementation, and review process for major housing development projects.

Measure B will also negatively impact surrounding open spaces and endanger a critical and irreplaceable wildlife corridor in the Evergreen area. Further, the measure is backed by individuals who have a vested interest in the measure’s passage. Proponents claim the measure will result in more housing that is affordable and benefit veterans – AARP has concluded it will do neither.  That’s why we urge San Jose residents to vote NO on Measure B.

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