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Mayor Keller, AARP Partner for Age-Friendly Designation While Unveiling New Fitness Center Addition at Palo Duro

Helps ensure a livable community for seniors to thrive in ABQ.

July 1, 2021 - Mayor Tim Keller was joined by AARP New Mexico State Director, Joseph Sanchez, Department of Senior Affairs Director, Anna Sanchez and other city leaders to unveil a new 2,000 square foot addition to the Palo Duro 50+ Sports and Fitness Center. The unveiling of the space is devoted to a partnered initiative with AARP to promote the development of Age-Friendly livable communities.   

“One of the best measures of a city is how it treats its older residents. Taking on the Age-Friendly Designation for Albuquerque signals our continued effort to create inclusive spaces and provide opportunities for all ages to thrive here in our town,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “The Palo Duro 50+ Fitness Sports and Center expands the health and wellness resources available in Albuquerque, supporting active living for adults 50 and older.”

The AARP Age-Friendly Designation helps ensure local leaders commit to improving the quality of life to support all ages. This is beneficial to communities as its policies address issues such as improving community life, land use, housing, and transportation – all which facilitate aging in place.

“The vast majority of people age 65 or older want to remain in their current home or community as they age,” said Joseph P. Sanchez, AARP New Mexico State Director. “Staying healthy plays a huge part in that. The Age-Friendly initiative promotes eight areas of focus necessary for aging in place – including health services, social participation, and being engaged in one’s community. These spaces, like the Palo Duro addition, help continue to meet those needs. AARP is pleased Mayor Keller and City leaders are committed to creating a city where people can age at home and thrive in their communities.”

 “Our mission is helping older adults embrace aging which involves creating opportunities to help promote happy and healthy living.” said Anna Sanchez, Director of Senior Affairs, “The possibilities of the Palo Duro addition in connection with the Age-Friendly Designation will ensure we continue to encourage the importance of improving and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.”

The Palo Duro 50+ Sports and Fitness Center is located on Albuquerque Public School property and adjacent to the McKinley Community Center. It is operated by the City of Albuquerque Department of Senior Affairs.  The majority of the funding for this project was provided by the New Mexico Aging and Long-Term Services Department in the form of a grant for $912,500. The contractor on the project is Consolidated Builders and the architect is FBT Architects. The addition is equipped with new TRX suspension training equipment and will provide room for exercise classes, from high-impact to low-impact such as aerobics and Tai Chi, and adds more restrooms to the facility.