Master Plan: 5 Bold Goals

Goal one for 2030
Goal one: Housing for All Ages & Stages

"We will live where we choose as we age in communities that are age-, disability-, and dementia-friendly and climate- and disaster-ready."

View Goal One’s data indicators and track our progress at the Data Dashboard for Aging.

Older adults, like people of all ages, need housing options that meet changing needs across the decades. Housing that allows for different household sizes, with accessible transportation options, welcoming parks and public spaces, and strong climate and disaster readiness, are foundational to well-being and continued engagement in civic, economic, and social life.

A wider range of housing models are emerging for the second half of life -- such as duplexes and accessory dwelling units to support multi-generational families and caregivers, and new models of residential communities with a range of services -- and these models can be scaled. California’s most well-known housing policy for older homeowners, Proposition 13, has limited property taxes to support affordability as people age; Proposition 13 may also have discouraged moving. The recently enacted Proposition 19 may encourage more older adults to consider moving into different homes and communities for the different stages of aging. While most older Californians are homeowners, older adults who rent homes are facing rising affordability challenges. Sharp gaps in home ownership rates by race and ethnicity, due to the legacy of housing discrimination, means Latinx and Black elders are more likely to be renters than White older Californians. Housing policies grounded in equity – for owners and renters, for all races and all ages, for living alone and all household sizes – can begin to remedy discrimination and advance more housing options for all.

Transportation choices beyond cars both help slow climate change and help adults live in homes of choice, especially after experiencing a decline in the physical mobility or the ability to safely drive. The future of transportation includes more choices for people of all ages (“multi-modal”). Some older adults and people with disabilities need specialized transportation services, such as door-to-door paratransit and escorts to physician’s offices. Accessible transportation networks of buses and additional options keep people of all ages and abilities connected to services, social opportunities, and community activities.

California’s climate and natural landscape offer some of the country’s most beautiful parks and public lands. These spaces are integral to both mental and physical health, playing a critical role in promoting social inclusion. While adults aged 60 and over account for 20 percent of the population, older adults only represent approximately 4 percent of total park users (although, at same time, they are the majority of State Park volunteers).

California’s increasing wildfires and the COVID-19 pandemic have highlighted the pressing need for community design that improves our ability to remain safe during climate and human-made disasters, while also taking measures to prevent and prepare for them. While all Californians are impacted by climate change, some populations, including older adults, are more vulnerable than others to its dangers and health consequences.

California will pursue Housing for All Ages & Stages through below strategies and initiatives.

Strategy A: More Housing Options

California communities are increasingly developing more affordable housing options to meet the needs of all stages of life for all people, regardless of age, race, income, ability, or household size. The production, protection, and preservation of affordable housing, including Accessory Dwelling Units and Residential Care Facilities of all sizes, will support older adults, caregivers, and their families.

  • Initiative 1

    - Increase the supply of climate-friendly, affordable rental and homeownership opportunities for older adults and people with disabilities through streamlining of local, state, and federal funding. (Lead Agency: BCSH) green dot image
  • Initiative 2

    - Explore emerging local government models to inform consideration of Rental Subsidy Programs for older adults and people with disabilities. Identify existing program parameters including subsidy amount, duration, eligibility criteria, and priority populations. (Lead Agency: BCSH)green dot image
  • Initiative 3

    - Address the housing needs of older adults and people with disabilities by promoting statewide access to integrated models, including connections to social services, healthcare, housing, and home and community-based services, e.g., Community Care Expansion, Healthier at Home, and others in support of Californians remaining in their own homes and communities. (Lead Agency: CalHHS)green dot image
  • Initiative 4

    - Implement the Veterans Support of Self-Reliance pilot program to provide enhanced supportive services for veterans aged 55 and over who reside in permanent supportive housing. (Lead Agency: CalVet)green dot image
  • Initiative 5

    - Identify barriers to the production of Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) and assess opportunities for local, state, and federal action to continue delivering on opportunities to increase housing production, including ADUs. (Lead Agency: BCSH)green dot imagegreen dot image
  • Initiative 6

    - Analyze expenditures from California’s housing finance programs to determine impact on older adults and people with disabilities and the extent to which the programs have benefitted this population. (Lead Agency: BCSH)green dot image

Strategy B: Transportation Beyond Cars

Age- and disability-friendly transportation networks can be strengthened through improved community walkability and expansion of bus and transit stops, transit rider education and subsidies, seamless paratransit across transit district lines, and driver safety education.

  • Initiative 7

    - Leverage federal and state investments in transportation infrastructure to promote access to safer, sustainable, and more equitable multi-modal mobility options for older adults and people with disabilities. (Lead Agency: CalSTA)green dot image
  • Initiative 8

    - Review mobility and demographic data through tools such as the Caltrans Transportation Equity Index and incorporate feedback from the Interagency Transportation Equity Advisory Committee to enhance transportation project decision-making, including a focus on the mobility needs of older adults and people with disabilities. (Lead Agency: CalSTA)green dot image
  • Initiative 9

    - Support the expansion of integrated accessible transportation models through the following strategies:

    a) Explore opportunities to strengthen Consolidated Transportation Service Agencies (CTSAs) across the state; (Lead Agencies: CalHHS; CalSTA)

    b) Encourage innovation in flexible transit options, including, but not limited to, rural communities; (Lead Agency: CalSTA)

    c) Promote free and reduced fare bus/transit (including using digital ID solutions to streamline access) and transit rider education, with outreach and education about cross-eligibility of paratransit services, as well as integration of fare systems to improve transit passenger experience and increase access in urban, suburban, and rural areas through the California Integrated Travel Project. (Lead Agency: CalSTA, GovOps)
  • Initiative 10

    - Improve community walkability, increase pedestrian safety, and provide accessible and connected transportation options for travelers of all ages and abilities through the California Active Transportation Program and Complete Streets projects. (Lead Agencies: SGC, CalSTA)green dot imagegreen dot image
  • Initiative 11

    - Support local programs and regional initiatives focused on expanding clean climate transportation options for older adults and people with disabilities, e.g., Clean Mobility Project Vouchers and zero-emission fleets. (Lead Agency: CalEPA)green dot image

Strategy C: Outdoor and Community Spaces for All Ages

All Californians can benefit from more convenient park access within a ten-minute walk or less, co-location of parks with community centers offering programming for all ages, and incorporation of smart park technologies.

  • Initiative 12

    - Partner with and incentivize community-based groups, including tribal elder councils, local government, and aging advisory councils, to support aging-in-place and provide intergenerational programming, transportation, and access to outdoor spaces for older adults and people with disabilities, as well as youth and families. (Lead Agency: CNRA)green dot image
  • Initiative 13

    - Initiate inter-agency collaboration to create intergenerational outdoor education programming for children and youth, people with disabilities, and older adults. Programs should encourage intergenerational learning and connection and provide the health benefits of nature, foster community connection, and inspire environmental stewardship. (Lead Agency: CNRA)green dot image

Strategy D: Emergency Preparedness & Response

Preparation and planning with and for older adults and people with disabilities is especially important to prioritize, given the higher risk of death or harm due to emergencies and disasters. Improving technologies and communications that address the access and functional needs of residents during disasters can also improve preparedness and response to these growing populations.

  • Initiative 14

    - Research and evaluate new and emerging technologies designed to support disaster resiliency in older adults, people with disabilities, and all Californians with access or functional needs, and focus on developing a unified approach to emergency response across the state, including advancing the All-Hazards Dashboard. (Lead Agencies: CalOES, CalHHS)green dot image
  • Initiative 15

    - Minimize the impacts of power outages for electricity-dependent Californians through mitigation, enhanced communication, and an increase in supportive resources with the California Public Utilities Commission, Investor-Owned Utilities, and community-based organizations. (Lead Agencies: CalOES, CPUC)green dot imagegreen dot image

Strategy E: Climate-Friendly Aging

Age-friendly communities are naturally in alignment with environmentally friendly initiatives, including low-emissions transportation systems; walkable and low vehicle-miles-traveled (VMT) neighborhoods and cities; and in-home energy-saving modifications. Community planning can factor in climate impact and safety, including disaster resiliency, in new, updated, and rebuilt housing and transportation.

  • Initiative 16

    - Increase the number of Clean Air Centers serving older adults and people with disabilities, beginning with a 20 percent increase in the Bay Area starting in 2022. (Lead Agency: CalEPA)green dot image
  • Initiative 17

    - Conduct targeted outreach to older adults, people with disabilities, and family caregivers to mitigate the severe impacts of extreme heat, wildfires, power outages, flooding, freezing temperatures, and other emergency situations brought about by climate change, deploying expert resources delivered through the Strategic Growth Council’s Community Resilience Centers, CNRA’s Urban Greening program, CAL FIRE’s Urban and Community Forestry program, the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research’s Extreme Heat and Community Resilience Program, and the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research’s Community-Based Public Awareness campaign. (Lead Agencies: CNRA, OPR)green dot image

Housing is essential to our ability to age where and how we choose with dignity. We must ensure that all Californians have access to safe and affordable housing options that meet our needs at every stage of life.

Lourdes Castro-Ramirez, Secretary of the CA Business, Consumer Services and Housing Agency

In 2023-2024, California will advance ninety-five new Master Plan for Aging initiatives, building upon the work of the plan’s first two years. Each initiative features a designated area of focus:
blue dot image Deliver
orange dot imageAnalyze
green dot imageCommunicate

For a list of the 2021-2022 Initiatives, please view the original Master Plan for Aging report or the 2021 MPA Initiatives Progress Report.

Local Models: Age Well San Diego
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Age Well San Diego has a vision for affordable housing and age-friendly communities, which includes goals of implementing zoning ordinances that create mixed-use villages; policies and programs to prevent homelessness; increased affordable housing stock, including Accesory Dwelling Units; and developing supports to assist older adults in aging where they choose.