Appendix: A Profile of Promising Practices from Canada and Abroad – Additional resources
- Provincial-level Case Study Documents
- Other Case Study Documents
- Research Papers/ Reports/ Articles
- Conference Proceedings
- Educational Opportunities/ Resource Guides
- Literature Reviews
- Electronic Networks/ Webinars
- Other Initiatives and Projects from Across Canada Highlighting Health in the Built Environment
Please note: this is not an exhaustive list, but should provide readers with a good assortment of resources to assist in further work in this area.
ONTARIO: Healthy Communities and the Built Environment: Principles and Practices of Multi-sectoral Collaborations
This document features seven case studies of multi-sectoral collaboratives in Ontario aiming to improve public health through land use, planning policy, and community design. The document showcases initiatives and collaborative efforts and shares the experiences, insights, lessons and knowledge of each unique collaborative. The document was developed as part of the “Healthy Communities and the Built Environment” project, a collaborative project led by the Ontario Healthy Communities Coalition (OHCC) and involving seven organizations. To view the case studies and learn more about the project please visit the OHCC website.
For more information please contact:
Jadie McDonnell, Communications Coordinator, Ontario Healthy Communities Coalition
2 Carlton Street – Suite 1810, Toronto, Ontario M5B 1J3
Tel: 416-408-4841, ext 3
BRITISH COLUMBIA: From Strategy to Action: Case Studies on Physical Activity and the Built Environment
This made-in-BC resource guide is designed to strengthen our collective understanding about how to enhance health through effective planning and design. It is intended for those who work in health services, urban planning and development, government, and education. Each of the 21 case studies includes a project summary and a Tools Used section identifying its policy, programming and procedural devices. For international examples, an Application in B.C. section explains how similar projects could be undertaken in British Columbia. To view the case study document please visit the PHSA website (PDF Document).
For more information please contact:
Tannis Cheadle, Provincial Manager, Population & Public Health Initiatives
Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA)
700 - 1380 Burrard St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 2H3
- Communities in Motion
A selection of Canadian communities that are making active transportation a priority (PDF Document).
- Pedestrian and Bicycle Information System Case Study Compendium
This compendium contains a collection of case studies that cover pedestrian and bicycle projects and programs from across the US and abroad (PDF Document).
- Active Cities: An Opportunity for Leadership By the Big City Mayors Caucus
This brief makes the case for civic leaders from Canadian cities to adopt a strategic and integrated approach to sport, recreation, and physical activity (PDF Document).
- Active Design: Promoting Opportunities for Sport and Physical Activity Through Good Design
Active Design provides easy-to-use guidance and information to town planners, architects and urban designers on how to put sport and opportunities to get active at the heart of new housing and community developments, both public and private.
- Background Paper: National Scan of Actions to Address the Relationship between Built Environments, Physical Activity and Obesity
A summary of the actions underway nationally to improve community physical/built environments which encourage physical activity and reduce the risk of obesity and chronic disease.
- BC on the Move: Planning the Path to Health
A discussion of ways to promote active transportation planning in British Columbia, including key policies and a rationale for change (PDF Document).
- BC Sprawl Report: Walkability and Health 2009
This report is the third in Smart Growth BC’s Sprawl Report series and focuses on how the physical design of neighbourhoods affects walking and biking in BC’s communities, and whether this has any impact on individual health (PDF Document).
- The Built Environment, Physical Activity, Heart Disease and Stroke
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada position statement.
- Creating a Healthier Built Environment in British Columbia
The purpose of this report is to identify and assess a number of changes related to the built environment that can effectively address obesogenic factors and promote healthy body weight at a population level through increased physical activity and improved nutrition (PDF Document).
- Fitting Places: How the Built Environment Affects Active Living and Active Transportation
A discussion paper explores recent trends in making the built environment more supportive of active living (PDF Document).
- Foundations for a Healthier Built Environment: Summary Paper
This paper provides an introduction to the topic of healthy built environments (PDF Document).
- Greener Neighbourhoods Better for Kids' Waistlines
A study of whether children living in city neighbourhoods with high “greenness” have less weight gain over time than those living in less green neighbourhoods.
- Healthy Communities, Sustainable Communities: The 21st Century Planning Challenge
A Call to Action and position paper focusing on healthy and sustainable communities that emphasizes the importance of urban design, active transportation, and green infrastructure. The paper also explores the links between public health and land use planning and includes strategies for collaborating on tangible actions that result in healthier communities (PDF Document).
- How Land Use and Transportation Systems Impact Public Health: An Annotated Bibliography
This annotated bibliography is structured around the relationships between the built environment, activity patterns, and public health (PDF Document).
- Improving the Health of Canadians: An Introduction to Health in Urban Places
The report shows that health differences between neighbourhoods can be just as big as—or sometimes bigger than—differences between Canada’s cities or even between countries.
- Linking Health and the Built Environment: An Annotated Bibliography of Canadian and Other Related Research
The report describes the methodology used and discusses various themes that emerged from the search, that was one component of the “Healthy Community and the Built Environment” project of the Ontario Healthy Communities Coalition.
- Neighbourhood Environments and Resources for Healthy Living - A Focus on Diabetes in Toronto
The first Canadian study of its kind, this ICES Atlas examines the role neighbourhoods play in the diabetes epidemic. In the three-year comprehensive study of 140 Toronto neighbourhoods, poverty and immigration were found to be key factors in developing type 2 diabetes.
- New Data for a New Era: A Summary of the SMARTRAQ Findings
This report summarizes the results of one of the largest, most comprehensive planning studies yet undertaken for a large metropolitan area (PDF Document).
- New Healthy Community Design Articles
A number of articles on the built environment and public health on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.
- Promoting Physical Activity and Active Living in Urban Environments: The Role of Local Governments
This booklet concisely overviews the best available evidence on physical activity in the urban environment and makes suggestions for policy and practice based on that evidence (PDF Document).
- Promoting Public Health Through Smart Growth - Building Healthier Communities Through Transportation and Land Use Policies and Practices
This report explains how our built environment shapes our transportation choices, and in turn, human health. It reviews the existing research for a range of transportation-related health impacts on seven public health outcomes.
- State of the Evidence Review on Urban Health and Healthy Weights
The objectives of the report were to review and synthesize the evidence on: structural and community-level characteristics of urban environments that promote or inhibit the achievement of healthy weights, and effectiveness of interventions to assist urban populations in achieving healthy weights.
- Healthy Communities and the Built Environment Provincial Roundtable Report (Ontario)
This report provides an overview and identifies next steps arising from the Ontario Healthy Communities and the Built Environment Provincial Roundtable held on June 12, 2008 in Toronto, Ontario (PDF Document).
- Ontario Healthy Communities Knowledge Exchange Forum
The Healthy Communities Knowledge Exchange Forum was held in April 2008 in Waterloo, Ontario; it was co-hosted by the Waterloo Region Healthy Communities Coalition and the Healthy Communities Research Network (PDF Document).
- Thinking Differently about Public Health and the Built Environment
An Urban Leadership Series Event on the built environment was hosted by the Canadian Urban Institute in December 2007.
- Built Environment Tool Kit (Heart and Stroke Foundation)
Coming in 2009, the Heart and Stroke Foundation is developing a Tool Kit to help build community level capacity, policy-relevant knowledge, and collaborative multi-sectoral action to facilitate the changes needed to make built environments more supportive of physical activity and the health of Canadian individuals and families. The Tool Kit will be available on-line and free of charge and is intended to:
- build capacity for action by Canadians at the community level to encourage and facilitate community design that supports physical activity and improved health;
- build multi-sectoral understanding of, and engagement with, healthy urban design principles and processes; and
- facilitate partnerships and collaborative action in healthy community planning and design.
- Children, Youth and Transport – Information Booklets
Information Booklets for health and recreation professionals, educators, municipal officials, parents and youth (PDF Document).
- Community Assessment Tool
This Community Assessment Tool is designed to help you define or identify where your community is and to suggest where it needs to go. With this information, you can use various guides as “road maps” to plot a course to make your community bicycle-friendly and walkable, and to support active living (PDF Document).
- Core Indicators for Public Health in Ontario: Built Environment Resources
In 2009, in response to the inclusion of the built environment in the Ontario Public Health Standards and the interest in this at a meeting of the Association of Public Health Epidemiologists in Ontario, a working group was established to develop indicators and three resources were produced to inform indicator development.
- Increasing Physical Activity Through Community Design - A Guide for Public Health Practitioners
This guide presents strategies for promoting active community environments (PDF Document).
- A Kid’s Guide to Building Great Communities: A Manual for Planners and Educators
This manual is designed to provide planners and educators with ideas, exercises and materials for use with children and youth – in a variety of settings (PDF Document).
- Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for Neighbourhood Development Rating System Pilot Project (LEED-ND)
This Rating System integrates principles of smart growth, urbanism and green building into the first national system for neighbourhood design.
- Making the Case for Active Transportation: 8 Fact Sheets
Information bulletins have been developed for professionals and community members who want to build a case for active transportation in their community. Academic, government and non-government sources are used to build a strong case for implementing active transportation opportunities at the local level.
- Planning Primer Program
A series of half-day courses designed to provide resources and teach skills to aid residents participating in the land-use planning process in the City of Ottawa.
- Public Health Law & Policy – Planning for Healthy Places (US)
A number of toolkits including how to assist in building healthy, vibrant communities through land use policy change, from the perspective of planners and health officials/practitioners.
- Your Next Move: Choosing a Neighbourhood with Sustainable Features
This guide provides assistance on finding a home in a neighbourhood that is safe, convenient, environmentally-friendly and affordable.
- The Impact of the Built Environment on the Health of the Population: A Review of the Review Literature
Provides an overview of the evidence of the impacts of land use planning on the health of the population.
- Linking Health and the Built Environment - A Literature Review
Contains listings of Canadian literature, and other related research, along with abstracts and other pertinent information.
- Public Health and Urban Sprawl in Ontario: A Review of the Pertinent Literature
This report summarizes pertinent information on the relationship between urban sprawl and health, and identifies the key issues that are relevant to the growing sprawl-related health problems in Ontario (PDF Document).
- Active Transportation Canada List Serve
By TransActive Solutions (Michael Haynes).
- CHNET-Works! Webinar Series - University of Ottawa
Hosted by the Community Health Research Unit at the University of Ottawa, CHNET-Works! is an evolving infrastructure, using innovative information technology to help support discussions and actions on pressing community health issues.
- Green Municipality Fund Webinars Series - Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM)
FCM features webinars in each of the program areas: brownfields, energy, planning, transportation, waste and water.
- Active Communities Program, Prince Edward Island
A program promoting physical activity – currently 22 towns and villages are registered, populations ranging between 700 and 40,000.
- Active Community Plan, Quesnel, British Columbia
Quesnel's Active Community Committee developed an Active Community Plan which contains strategies for increasing physical activity levels in greater Quesnel by 20% by 2010 (PDF Document).
- Active Halton, Halton, Ontario
A community planning and networking initiative launched by Health Department to address unhealthy weights in Halton.
- Active Transportation Committee, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan
This multisectoral committee (including health reps) provides input to developers and advocates for Active Transportation supportive environments.
- Active Transportation Plan, Bridgewater, Nova Scotia
This town of 8,000 established a multi-sectoral Active Transportation Committee that led the development of an Active Transportation and Connectivity Plan.
- Active Transportation Plan, Moncton, New Brunswick
The Moncton Active Transportation Plan is steering the community towards a healthier lifestyle.
- Arctic Hip Hop Initiative, Nunavut
A recent initiative that will encourage youth in Nunavut to eat healthy, and stay active by dancing to hip hop.
- BIXI, Montréal, Québec
The first public bike system in North America – 2,400 bikes will be available for rent at self-service stations.
- Building Healthy Communities Initiative, Simcoe/Muskoka, Ontario
The Simcoe-Muskoka District Health Unit is working with local planning agencies.
- Built Environment and Active Transportation Initiative, British Columbia
The Built Environment and Active Transportation Initiative (BEAT) is promoting changes in the design of the Built Environment and planning for Active Transportation in communities throughout British Columbia.
- Child and Youth Friendly Land Use and Transport Planning Guidelines, Nova Scotia
Cape Breton University is leading a study to explore what needs to be done in Nova Scotia to further active transportation in and around small towns/villages and in rural areas (PDF Document).
- Community Track Projects, Old Crow and Carcross, Yukon
In these rural communities of less than 500 people, local RCMP, government, community members and youth partnered to build single tracks for biking, skiing, walking etc.
- Creating Active Rural Communities, Haliburton, Ontario
A coalition of local planning, public health, and tourism representatives joined forces to develop Active Transportation Plans.
- East Coast Trail, Newfoundland and Labrador
A 560 km trail maintained by a non-profit association, with funding from the provincial government.
- Farm to School Salad Bar, British Columbia
A program aiming to improve health of school kids by increasing access to healthy food in 12 BC schools.
- Farming an urban neighbourhood Comité local de Revitalisation urbaine intégrée de Place Benoît, Montréal
The project aims to mobilize a vulnerable group of citizens by launching an urban agriculture project to control food insecurity and to bring about sustainable improvements to the living environment for 750 residents of a housing complex. The residents will be involved in sponsoring fruit trees, improving their surroundings, and creating a gardeners’ network and a site plan for greenhouse market gardens.
- GO-by-Bike, Ajax, Ontario
An active living, local tourism and green transportation pilot project aiming to kick start a new bicycle and transit travel model in Ontario.
- Grand Concourse Walkway, St John's, Newfoundland and Labrador
A 120km interconnected walkway system that links three municipalities.
- Health Centre, Taloyoak, Nunavut
The Hamlet of Taloyoak is working with the Health Department to develop health and wellness programs based at the health centre.
- Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada & CIHR - Built Environment, Obesity and Health Strategic Initiative, Canada
Information on nine research projects currently being funded by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada and Canadian Institutes of Health Research.
- Imagine Milton-Parc, Centre d'écologie urbaine, Montréal
This project aims to develop ecological alternatives at the neighbourhood level by encouraging the adoption of healthy lifestyles and promoting supportive social environments so that the experience can be applied to other neighbourhoods. At least 70 residents will receive training on collective urban gardening, sustainable transportation, reducing energy and water consumption, and healthy waste management.
- In Motion Committee, Weyburn, Saskatchewan
A variety of sectors including the health region have formed a committee with a strong voice in city parks planning.
- Pedestrian Charter Steering Committee, Waterloo, Ontario
A citizen's advocacy group has partnered with public health, and has now advised on eight local municipal plans and construction projects.
- Réseau Blanc, Montréal, Québec
A 30km cycling network maintained for winter cycling.
- Schoolyard Naturalization and Transformation Program, Newfoundland and Labrador
In 2002, the Western School District began transforming local schoolyards into naturalized "outdoor laboratories."
- Trail System, Okotoks, Alberta
Created a 40 kilometre trail system that connects all schools and residences to within 200m from an off-road path.
- TravelSmart, Vancouver, British Columbia
A pilot program involving targeted marketing to increase walking and cycling.
- Urban Heat Island, Éco-Quartier Peter McGill, Montréal
The project aims to revitalize an Urban Heat Island in Montréal from a sustainable development perspective. A number of partners and citizens will be involved in activities aiming to: enhance air quality and residential living environments, practice responsible resource management, and adopt sound sustainable development practices in local businesses, institutions and stores as well as among citizens living in the urban island neighbourhood.
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