APA’s Plan4Health project, an effort funded by the CDC, supports communities working at the intersection of planning and public health to increase access to healthy foods and opportunities for active living.
The Columbus, Indiana, coalition — Reach Healthy Communities — is pursuing strategies to increase walkability throughout the community. The coalition engaged the Walkable and Livable Communities (WALC) Institute to facilitate an Active Living Workshop in October 2015 to engage community members in making their streets and neighborhoods more walkable, livable, healthy and sustainable. The 1.5-day workshop kicked off with over 1,000 students walking or biking to school as part of a Walk to School Day.
Other components of the workshop included leading third grade students on a walkabout to understand environmental elements that encourage people to safely walk and bike, public presentations, and meetings with Columbus community members.
The WALC Institute released a report and photo vision following their engagement with Reach Healthy Communities and the Columbus community members. The report — Columbus, Indiana: Walking Toward Greatness — includes comprehensive information about a range of active living concepts, observations and recommendations for Columbus (including long-term policy recommendations), fact sheets, and other tools.
Components of the work ahead include Safe Routes to School and traffic calming, among other efforts. This work was also featured on APA’s Policy News for Planners blog read more — here.
Images from Reach Healthy Communities and the WALC Institute.
Learn more about the coalition’s pursuit of active living on the Columbus, Indiana, Plan4Health webpage and by visiting their website Go Healthy, Columbus. Visit the Peer Learning Network to listen to two mini-webinars to learn more about the coalition’s structure and approach to community engagement and watch Laura Garrett from Columbus discuss the coalition’s relationship-building and active living strategies as part of the video collection.