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Articles & Reports
Articles & Reports: Active Transportation

SafeTREC: Transportation and Health – Policy Interventions for Safer, Healthier People and Communities
This report provides policy recommendations in the following areas: policies that improve the environment and environmental health; policies that enhance community design and promote active transportation; policies that reduce motor vehicle-related injuries and fatalities. The report is authored by the Safe Transportation Research and Education Center (SafeTREC)  at UC Berkeley and was made possible by a cooperative agreement between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Partnership for Prevention.

CDC: Recommended Community Strategies and Measurements to Prevent Obesity in the United States
Recent reports have shown that approximately two-thirds of U.S. adults and one-fifth of U.S. children are obese or overweight. This trend is a growing epidemic and is dependent upon many built environment factors. For this reason, it is important to promote healthy communities and lifestyles. A report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention identified and recommended a set of strategies and associated measurements that communities and local governments can use to plan and monitor environmental and policy-level changes for obesity prevention. It provides a resource of these policies and recommendations to help address this problem on a community level.

Active Transportation for America: A Case for Increased Federal Investment in Bicycling and Walking
Active Transportation for America makes the case and quantifies the national benefits—for the first time—that increased federal funding in bicycling and walking infrastructure would provide tens of billions of dollars in benefits to all Americans. By making active transportation a viable option for everyday travel, we will cost-effectively reduce oil dependence, climate pollution and obesity rates while providing more and better choices for getting around.

Creating Healthy Environments: Case Studies of Local Health Departments
What strategies, relationships, and roles are local health departments using to promote healthy built environments? Three case studies highlight the successes, challenges, and important lessons from three public health departments in California. First, the profile of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health describes how the PLACE Program became established and how the County supported the City of El Monte to add a Health Element to its General Plan. The case study on Shasta County examines how a modest grant and community involvement allowed the rural county to secure a Safe Routes to School grant. Shasta County also used this process to develop a method for evaluating how new development could affect health. Third, Contra Costa County’s Department of Public Health teamed up with the local transportation agency to educate engineers, planners, and residents about the benefits of traffic calming for health. Each report addresses the successes, challenges, and capacity-building steps involved in each County’s work to improve the health of its residents through the built environment.

Bicycle Friendly Communities: Lessons from LA County Guide
Many cities, organizations, and advocates in L.A. County are promoting and supporting bicycling as an effective response to obesity, physical inactivity and our reliance on the automobile. A number of bicycle-friendly initiatives have been started, and progress can be seen in communities throughout the county. The Bicycle Friendly Communities: Lessons from LA County Guide ( was created to reinforce that progress and help more communities move toward bicycle-friendliness. It was written for anyone who wants to bring the benefits of bicycle-friendliness to his or her community – that is, for anyone who wants to use bicycling as a tool to make the built environment more people-focused, create conditions that support access to daily physical activity, and develop a more sustainable, livable, and healthy community.

"How to Increase Bicycling for Daily Travel and Getting the Wheels Rolling"
These two recent reports from Active Living Research and Changelab Solutions, respectively, offer insight into the tools that planning and public health departments have at their disposal to increase bicycling in their communities. “How to Increase Bicycling for Daily Travel” focuses on the most effective strategies for encouraging bicycling, such as integrated with public transit service. “Getting the Wheels Rolling” is intended to help policymakers understand the best ways to use laws and policies for making change on the ground.

Articles & Reports: Housing

Housing and Health: New Opportunities for Dialogue and Action
This report, from ChangeLab Solutions, Center for Housing Policy, National Center for Healthy Housing, and Trust for America’s Health describes the relationship between housing policy and health. Housing conditions can affect physiological health in a straightforward ways through exposing residents to dangerous chemicals, like lead. Other attributes of housing that affect health include physical neighborhood characteristics, which affect walkability and access to healthy food, and neighborhood social characteristics, like poverty and crime. Beyond describing these issues, this concept paper makes recommendations for addressing these issues through policy.
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