Health Care

Transportation systems, development patterns, and community design and planning decisions all can have profound effects on physical activity. People can lead healthier, more active lives if our communities are built to facilitate safe walking and biking and the use of public transportation, all considered forms of active transportation.

In 2001, the average American spent 64 minutes per day in a vehicle. Almost three quarters of Americans feel they currently have no choice but to drive as much as we do. Providing more transportation options can help us achieve our recommended levels of physical activity, while lowering pollution rates and increasing access to essential destinations like grocery stores, schools, jobs and health care services.

Changes to improve active transportation will require many individuals and agencies – transportation engineers, city planners, architects, schools, health professionals, government agencies at all levels, community advocates, citizens, and employers – to rethink the way we plan and develop our communities. This collaborative work can be guided by the following strategies and tactics.

STRATEGY 1
Increase accountability of project planning and selection to ensure infrastructure supporting active transportation and other forms of physical activity.

STRATEGY 2
Prioritize resources and provide incentives to increase active transportation and other physical activity through community design, infrastructure projects, systems, policies, and initiatives. 

STRATEGY 3
Integrate land-use, transportation, community design and economic development planning with public health planning to increase active transportation and other physical activity.

STRATEGY 4
Increase connectivity and accessibility to essential community destinations to increase active transportation and other physical activity.