An estimated 1 in 5 North Carolinians will be 65 or older by 2035. To help communities keep pace, AARP North Carolina will launch the Great Race to Age-Friendly in 2018.

“This will be a friendly challenge for bragging rights as the best place in the state to age in place,” said Steve Hahn, AARP state communications director.

So far, four North Carolina communities have joined the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities, which requires a commitment to improve factors that affect the well-being of older residents, such as transportation, housing and social participation. Such changes can also boost property values and economic growth, Hahn said.

AARP is also sponsoring a public television series on UNC-TV that highlights various aspects of age-friendly communities. Watch for it in late November at To learn more, go to

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