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Many of the seniors who contribute to Tucson's growth and development are newcomers. Tucson's 60+ population, increased more than 30 percent in the 1980's and 1990's, and continued to grow in the 2000's. By the year 2010, according to projections, Tucson will have a population exceeding 1.1 million, of which 250 thousand will be seniors.

Seniors continue to play a big part in the booming housing market in Tucson. But, like the city they call home, Tucson's seniors can't be typed. One example: A golf course is no longer de rigueur for developments aimed at the "active adult" set.

Seniors are generous when it comes to what they see as their civic responsibilities. The arts, education and community service organizations all rely heavily on financial and volunteer support from the active adult population.

When these model citizens can squeeze in the time, they may want to pick up a good book, one that will tell them about the adventures earlier Tucsonans had on their way to turning a cowtown into a desert metropolis.

The Tucson metropolitan area is home to a number of active adult communities that offer a broad range of housing types and values.

Active adult communities offering a country club lifestyle include: Del Webb's Sunflower to the northeast, Heritage Highlands and Saddlebrook to the northwest, and La Jolla Verde, Santa Rita Springs, The Villages of Rio Rico, and Fairfield's Green Valley to the south.

The Academy Village located near the Rincon Mountains provides continued learning opportunities and comprehensive onsite wellness programs. La Posada, which is south of Tucson, is a continuing care retirement community offering garden homes and living apartments in a garden

Country club living in Tucson is not confined to the wealthy. Prices start in some neighborhoods at around $200,000.

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