Did You Know?

Bus riders account for more than 20 percent of people using Lake Shore Drive every day while taking up a fraction of the space that cars do.

Urban planning for club med

 They pioneered individual marketing of cycling on a national scale, and while they insist on misspelling organization (organisation) and center (centre), the Australians are on top of it again, this time concerning the connection between health and the plans and policies that organize our towns and metro regions.

The New South Wales Department of Health's Healthy Urban Design Checklist (thanks  Smart Growth Network for posting) gives the medical and public health professions an overview of how planning and policies get made (in New South Wales, granted, but it looks pretty familiar if you know how it works here). And it offers checklists that help wellness folks break down urban and suburban plan and policy proposals into their impact on healthy food availability, physical activity, housing, and transportation.

The checklists are ready to use by purt' near anyone who wants to comment or provide input from a healthy living perspective on a development proposal, plan or policy. The pages of dense copy before each easy-to-use checklist are educational and informative for people who really enjoy reading kind of wonky text. But I give you permission to skim them. The checklists are the gold in the creek bed here, and can guide you through healthy living considerations for any project or policy in your town. Check out the Quick Guide on page 41 (54th page of the PDF).