The Growing Demand For Gay Retirement Communities

Gay and lesbian seniors are increasingly seeking retirement communities that fit their lifestyle.
July 6, 2006, 6am PDT | maryereynolds
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"Jack Norris and Seymour Sirota feared ending up like a lot of older gay men they know â€" no children, partners dead or gone, families estranged, little to do but sit in their New York City apartments hoping the phone rings."

Now several projects around the country have begun to cater to gays and lesbians who are seeking a more welcoming environment to spend their golden years. These communities, increasing located in urban areas where gays and lesbians typically live, also serve as a resource center for the greater community.

"Gay men and lesbians, often closer to gay "families of choice" than to their biological families, seek shared values and interests in retirement. "I find this very strong search for community," says Maria Dwight of Gerontological Services Inc., a market research firm in Santa Monica, Calif."

One new community in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is sold out with a waiting list. Its gay-owned development company is building a second, larger project in Palm Springs, California. Other cities where gay and lesbian retirement communities have been built or are planned include Los Angeles, CA, Pecos, NM, Boston, MA, Zionville, NC, San Francisco, CA, and Santa Rosa, CA.

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Published on Monday, July 3, 2006 in USA Today
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