GAINESVILLE - America's post World War Two population spike is approaching retirement age, and this week Gainesville's Community Service Center Director said it's time to make room for them at the Senior Life Services Center.
Phillippa Lewis-Moss, during Thursday's first round of city department budget hearings, told City Council members the city needs to create a plan to recruit and retain the upcoming baby boomer retirees.
The leading edge of the so-called baby boom includes all those Americans born between 1946 and 1955, about 38 million people in all, and the leading edge of that population is retiring.
"We get visitors each and every day to the Senior Life Center who are looking for a place to connect and link with other older adults," Lewis-Moss told Council. "Our facility is getting dated, we have a really beautiful redesign of our existing blue print, but we know we're a couple of years out from a capital program. What we can start working on is developing programs that can effectively marry our older adult population with the new active baby boomers."
Lewis-Moss said the need is clearly there. The Center continues to get visitors, calls and letters from the baby boomers asking 'what's there for us'?
According to Lewis-Moss Gainesville/Hall County's population is expected to increase from 189,000 to over 500,000 by the year 2040, and about 20 percent of that population will be older adults.
"They're going to want a place to spend their time and connect with other people and we need to start getting ready," Lewis-Moss said. "My staff is going to spend a lot of time getting ourselves re-accredited for the Senior Life Center, for the Meals on Wheels Program, and developing a campaign for retiring baby boomers."