Senior housing is a critical need in New York. Since 2011, when the first crop of baby boomers retired, the population of America’s seniors has been steadily rising. With about 10,000 people retiring every day across the country, existing senior housing facilities are not enough to house this population.
In New York City, it is projected that by 2030 the population of residents aged over 65 years will hit 1.35 million, making up 14.8 percent of the population. Already, existing senior housing facilities are stretched to capacity. For those who want to get in, wait times are up to 10 years. According to LiveOn NY, the city’s estimated wait list has more than 200,000 names. In Manhattan community districts 7 and 9, for example, 19,700 seniors are waiting for only 45 annual affordable housing openings.
Left unresolved, this shortage will have terrible consequences. Homelessness is an example. Between 2007 and 2014, the number of seniors living in shelters in New York City rose 55 percent. It’s likely it will take the state government working hand in hand with community groups and the private sector to solve this problem.