Thursday, February 22, 2007

U-Turn Pittsburgh

That Frost Belt retirees are migrating to the Sun Belt should surprise no one. However, the return of the elderly to their hometown for the last months or years of life is making news:

"People relocate in their 60s when they're in good health and often move to active adult communities," said Sandy Markwood, chief executive officer of the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging. "When they face either a dramatic illness or the death of a spouse, all of a sudden these active adult communities are away from the support system they have and they're not as attractive as they once were."

Peter Morrison and Chris Briem have already noticed this emerging trend in Pittsburgh. They conclude that the region should expect a greater demand for health care services along with a stronger political voice for voters over the age of 60.

What the study suggest to me is that retirees retain a strong support network in Pittsburgh, even after leaving the region for better golfing weather. Talent and experience are leaving, but the lines of communication are still open. Baby boomers remain connected to their hometown wherever they may go.

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