To plan for a healthy and active aging population, Peel undertook an Age-Friendly Communities Built Environment Assessment.
What is an Age-Friendly Community?
An age-friendly community enables people of all ages to be engaged and participate in community activities and treats everyone with respect, regardless of age. An Age-Friendly Community is a place that makes it easy for older adults (aged 55+) and seniors (65+) to:
- stay active;
- maintain physical and mental wellbeing;
- stay connected to people that are important to them; and
- access services, facilities, and programs that are responsive to their needs.
Peel’s population is aging
Demographics show that Peel’s population will age significantly in the near future. In 2021, 14% of Peel’s population are seniors (65+). This figure will increase to 20% by 2051.
Peel Region is preparing for its aging population by supporting the vision to make Peel more age-friendly where seniors have access to services that enable them to age safely and with dignity, while maximizing their quality of life. To learn how the Region of Peel is conducting age-friendly planning to prepare for this population change, please see additional information below.
The Regional Official Plan is a tool that can guide, support and direct the development of age-friendly policies in housing options, transportation, infrastructure, accessible outdoor spaces, and walkable communities.
The Planning for an aging population discussion paper, 2016 (PDF) shows consultation with the community and research on best practices. The Region reviewed age-friendly policies from our local municipalities, across Canada and around the world to get a better understanding on how to meet the needs of our aging population.
On February 23, 2017, Regional Council adopted Regional Official Plan Amendment (ROPA) 27 as part of the larger Peel 2051 Official Plan Review. ROPA 27 includes policies related to health and the built environment, age-friendly planning,
Peel 2051 policies include:
- encourage local municipalities to develop policies that support seniors to age in place;
- promote the use of universal design principles to create safer, barrier-free and inclusive environments in Peel; and
- direction to assess the built environment, including public facilities in existing neighbourhoods where there is a significant senior population.
As directed by the Regional Official Plan, the Region has completed an Age-Friendly Planning Built Environment Assessment. The built environment includes many areas in which people live, work, and play, like streets, road crossings, parks, and commercial areas. The project has gathered information on the diverse seniors population in Peel and elements of the design of Peel communities through:
- Demographic research to understand seniors in Peel Region.
- Conducting audits to assess the age-friendliness of sample neighbourhoods across Peel
- Consultation with older adults, seniors, caregivers, and organizations serving seniors.
In September 2021, focus groups were conducted to discuss the experiences of seniors, service providers, and caregivers in Peel. Please see the presentations under Supporting Documents below.
The June 2022 final report summarizes Peel-wide analysis and sample neighbourhood audits, and identifies gaps and opportunities in Peel to address healthy, active aging, and universal (accessible) design in all aspects of the built environment and public spaces. The report presents 80 recommendations for Peel, and external agencies in some cases, to foster an age-friendly community by improving Peel’s built environment, policies, and services.
- Age-Friendly Planning Built Environment Assessment – Final Report, June 2022.
- Please note that the neighbourhood audit summary tables in report section 8.0, pages 36-65, are also available in a separate accessible format.
- Appendices A to D of the Age-Friendly Planning Built Environment Assessment, which includes:
- Appendix A: Age-friendly Built Environment Audit Tool
- Appendix B: Neighbourhood Typology Matrix
- Appendix C: Spatial Analysis
- Appendix D: Spatial Analysis - Data Glossary
- Please note that the appendices include complex maps and tables which may not be legible to a screen reader. Accessible copies of the information are available upon request.
- Presentation slides to the Peel Accessibility Advisory Committee on this project and next steps.
To prepare for the next phase of the project, Regional staff will review, determine the feasibility of, and prioritize recommendations for implementation. To review the recommendations, their status, and current related projects, access the Preliminary Recommendation Implementation Status Table.
Planning for an aging population discussion paper, 2016 (PDF)
September 2021 Focus Group Presentations
For more information, email Regional Planning or call (905) 791-7800 ext.4963.
- Age-friendly planning
- Aggregates resources and excess soil
- Agriculture and rural systems
- Climate change
- Greenlands system
- Growth management
- Health and the built environment
- Major transit station areas
- Other focus areas (including cultural heritage, Indigenous engagement, and waste management, and rural settlement boundary refinement)
- Provincial Greenbelt plans (including Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan and Niagara Escarpment Plan)
- Settlement area boundary expansion
- Wildland fires
- Water resources