Retirement communities with university ties

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While some retirees may wish to settle in a retirement community where they can play bridge or golf with their peers, others may desire a bit more excitement. Among the fastest-growing options for retirement are communities with ties to colleges and universities, giving residents access to campus activities, from classes to concerts.

“Current retirees are very focused on active, intellectually stimulating and intergenerational retirement environments, which is exactly what a college campus has to offer,” says assistant professor Andrew Carle, executive-in-residence and founding director of the Program in Senior Housing Administration at George Mason University, who is known for having defined an operational model for university-based retirement communities.

Although senior housing, along with the rest of the real estate market, suffered some setbacks during the recession, he says, “I do think these will be among the fastest new developments moving forward. I have experienced a clear increase in inquiries on this model.”

While older communities tended to adopt the Continuing Care Retirement Community, or CCRC, model, Carle says that now the field is more varied. “I think both advanced wellness programming and technology will allow more seniors to remain within independent living longer,” he says, “followed by a shorter stay in assisted living and perhaps little to no stay within a skilled nursing facility.”

Following are 10 retirement communities around the country whose residents enjoy the benefits of a college or university relationship.

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