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Pawtucket, RI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: To enable older adults to exercise, socialize and enjoy nature, Pawtucket's Division of Senior Services created an outdoor activity center at Leon Mathieu Senior Center. They installed seating, planters and two large outdoor tabletop game stations. Project organizers also created an age-friendly playground for low-impact exercise, adding fitness and recreational equipment. The Senior Center provides services and programs for adults 55 and older and aims to encourage healthy aging and keep older residents connected to the community.

Columbia, SC

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2020

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: As part of efforts to activate space and increase the vitality of Columbia's downtown, this project created the city's first parklet. Parklets transform on-street parking spaces into public gathering spaces. Originally intended to be temporary, Columbia's miniature park consists of a ground-level, fenced-in deck featuring an art installation, a cafe table and chairs and new planters. While several nearby restaurants lack outdoor seating space, the parklet remedied this, giving visitors a space to eat and socialize. To gather public feedback about the new space, city staff displayed a QR code onsite, which linked to an online survey. Spurred by the success of this project, organizers made plans to add more parklets downtown. City staff have also looked into creating a parklet ordinance, which would allow local businesses to create similar spaces in the future.

Iola, KS

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2022

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: This project built a musical playground featuring outdoor, mounted instruments in a flower garden on the grounds of Allen County Regional Hospital.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Projects

Central Falls, RI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2020

Project Category: Park enhancements

Description: To allow for more community events in Veterans Memorial Park, the City of Central Falls purchased two canopies to shade visitors from the sun. The City then set up the all-weather canopies at a series of events held in the park, including a picnic, Zumba gatherings and ice cream socials. Project organizers say the canopies will allow them to expand outdoor programming aimed at older adult residents.

Central Falls, RI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2022

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: To transform a green space into an attraction for people of all ages, this project installed amenities such as seating and tables for dominoes and chess.

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