This new publication from AARP and the National Complete Streets Coalition provides excellent measures and metrics for Complete Streets. Phoenix’s efforts to measure walking trips get a special mention in the guide.
Roughly 30 million Americans—about 1 in 10—live in communities without adequate access to healthy food. NPR recently profiled Brown’s Super Stores, a chain of seven profitable supermarkets in low-income neighborhoods in and around Philadelphia. The stores have bus stations nearby and some even have community centers and health clinics. One key to their success? Their owner says: “Before we did anything, we brought together a group of community leaders, and we just asked them to tell us exactly what it is they were looking for …
The most recent Arizona Town Hall, held April 19-22, 2015, discussed transportation issues and the report from the Town Hall was just released. Town Hall participants actively engaged in panel discussions about many facets of transportation in Arizona including infrastructure, development, location, new technology, financing, public versus private modes, and the relationship between transportation and Arizona’s economy. The excellent background report that was prepared for the Town Hall is also worth a read. It’s a great primer on Arizona’s transportation policies and infrastructure.
How healthy are Arizona’s counties? The new interactive maps from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation show how counties vary in their health ratings. The rankings take into account all of the factors that drive health, including the built environment and if communities have access to health care and healthy food.
One struggle with healthy communities is figuring out how to get concrete evidence that shows how changes in the built environment resulted in improvements in health. This Huffington Post article has solid ideas about how to link community development and health outcomes with data.
The national nonprofit America Walks recently released case studies about healthy communities. The case studies from Iowa, Massachusetts, and Oregon provide useful insights about how communities across the country are using innovative solutions to improve health.