Janet Smith: Plan today for Illinois’ aging baby boomers tomorrow

The State Journal-Register featured an op-ed by Janet Smith, co-director of the Voorhees Center in the College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs, on policy initiatives needed to ensure adequate housing and transportation for Illinois’ growing senior population.

There are two certainties about the future of aging baby boomers in Illinois: their number and their needs are expected to boom.

Policymakers here need to become aware of what’s on the horizon and prepare to address big challenges ahead.

Baby boomers are growing dramatically in number. Researchers estimate that by 2030, Illinois’ population will include 648,000 people 65 to 74 years old (a 76 percent gain), 419,000 people aged 75 to 84 (an 80 percent increase), and 153,000 people 85 or older (a 65 percent increase).

That means one in five Illinoisans will be older than 65 in the next 15 years.

Read the Full Op-Ed from The State Journal-Register »