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Reframing the Obesity ConversationReframing the Obesity Conversation
How obesity is described, or framed, can affect whether a solution has popular or decision-maker support. Learn more about reframing the conversation.

 

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New Road and Intersection Safety Tool

A new tool from Parks and Trails New York is available for local transportation planners and advocates to determine which intersections pose safety concerns for cyclists and pedestrians

Leisure-Time Physical Activity among New York State Adults by County, BRFSS 2016

“The report “Leisure-Time Physical Activity among New York State Adults by County, BRFSS 2016” presents the estimates of New Yorkers participating in leisure-time physical activity by county in NYS. According to the report, most adults (73.7%) in New York State participate in leisure-time physical activity; participation rates vary by county from 62.8% to 85.3%.
• Counties outside New York City with the highest rates are Tompkins (85.3%), Saratoga (83.0%) and Livingston (81.2%).
• Counties outside New York City with the lowest rates are Lewis (66.2%), Montgomery (67.5%) and Yates (67.5%).
• Among New York City boroughs, the rate is highest in Manhattan (79.7%) and lowest in Bronx (62.8%).”

The Ultimate Guide to Creating Walkable Streets

“Here at Strong Towns, we’re advocates for a simple concept we like to call “”slow the cars”” because we’ve seen in city after city that slowing down cars makes our communities more prosperous and resilient — not to mention safer.

But, while this concept is simple, the reasoning behind it and the path to get to safer streets is, by no means, easy. Today, we’re sharing our ultimate guide to building slower, more walkable streets, filled with helpful articles and resources you can use to #slowthecars in your town. We’ve broken it down into 4 key sections that will explain why we need walkable streets, how to tell if your streets aren’t walkable, and resources for building walkable streets, plus inspiring stories that will demonstrate how to build safer streets.”

How to Turn a Stroad into a Street (or a Road)

“Our national transportation conversation has us obsessing over finding more money to continue to do the same thing. This is only making us poorer.

Instead, we need to focus on finding ways to make better use of our existing investments. This means we need to spend our energy converting our most expensive, least productive and most dangerous transportation investment — our stroads — into either wealth-producing streets (to create a place) or highly productive roads (to connect productive places). The website shows you how to do just that.”

Frequent Routes to Funding

This fact sheet describes key steps to ensure your program is well positioned for funding, provides ideas for where to look for funding, and highlights the breadth of funding sources that programs from around the country are currently accessing.

Streets as Places Action Pack

This user-friendly guide addresses the common challenges local advocates face when working to improve streets. Are you looking to create better streets in your neighborhood or community? Have you gotten discouraged by bureaucratic red tape or simple lack of communication? Or, are you passionate about great streets but struggling to get neighbors or city officials to share your enthusiasm or vision for people-centered public spaces?

Understanding How the Built Environment Influences Transportation Choice

“One of the biggest factors in deciding which transportation mode you’ll use is the built environment. The infrastructure that surrounds us determines which modes get used the most and which the least.

Think about it like this: do you want to bike on a three-lane highway, or on a protected bike lane? If you chose the protected bike lane – or driving on the three-lane highway – the built environment influenced your decision.

These are some of the ways the built environment influences travel behavior. Many of them are interrelated. I”

Understanding the Basics of Transportation Choice

“At Mobility Lab, we spend a lot of time researching people’s transportation behavior and why they make the choices they do. What made you bike to work yesterday, but drive alone today?

Creating a sustainable, efficient, and equitable transportation network requires more than just building a new streetcar line. We need to consider what people consider when they make a mode choice, or else they won’t use the transportation options we invest in.”

Pedestrians First: Tools for a Walkable City

Walkability is a crucial first step in creating sustainable transportation in an urban environment. Effectively understanding and measuring the complex ecology of walkability has proven challenging for many organizations and governments, given the various levels of policy-making and implementation involved. In the past, Western and Eurocentric standards have permeated measurement attempts and have included data collection practices that are too complicated to have utility in many parts of the world or at a level beyond that of the neighborhood. In order to expand the measurement of walkability to more places and to promote a better understanding of walkability, ITDP has developed Pedestrians First. This tool will facilitate the understanding and the measurement of the features that promote walkability in urban environments around the world at multiple levels. With a better global understanding of walkability, and more consistent and frequent measurement of the walkability of urban environments, decision-makers will be empowered to enact policies that create more walkable urban areas.

Keep Calm and Carry On to School

A new infobrief, Keep Calm and Carry On to School: Improving Arrival and Dismissal for Walking and Biking, provides information on how schools, districts, cities, counties, and community partners can address arrival and dismissal in school travel plans as well as other planning, policy, and programming efforts.

Engaging Students with Disabilities in Safe Routes to School

A new infobrief provides information for Safe Routes to School staff, volunteers, or program leaders on how to plan and develop a program that considers and meets the needs of students with disabilities.

This infobrief describes the benefits of Safe Routes to School for students with disabilities, strategies for including students with disabilities within the six E’s of Safe Routes to School, important components of inclusive Safe Routes to School programming, considerations for students with different kinds of disabilities, and ways to partner and build your resources.”

Safety Demonstration Projects: Case Studies from Orlando, FL, Lexington, KY, and South Bend, IN

To test out creative approaches to safer street design, the National Complete Streets Coalition launched the Safe Streets Academy. We worked with three cities around the country to build skills in safer street design, creative placemaking, and community engagement, then helped the cities put these skills into practice. Through demonstration projects, the City of Orlando, FL, the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, KY, and the City of South Bend, IN transformed their streets, intersections, and neighborhoods into slower, safer places for people. Communities around the country can learn from the stories of these demonstration projects to test out low-cost ways to create safer streets.

These case studies highlight lessons learned from these demonstration projects, including how the projects helped these cities build trust with the community and with other jurisdictions, test out new approaches for safer street design and make quick adjustments as needed, and change the conversation about the importance of slower, safer streets.

Social Determinants of Health

This website provides CDC resources for SDOH data, tools for action, programs, and policy. They may be used by people in public health, community organizations, and health care systems to assess SDOH and improve community well-being.

Introducing the Assembly: Civic Design Guidelines

“The Center for Active Design is thrilled to announce the release of the Assembly: Civic Design Guidelines, a groundbreaking playbook for creating well-designed and well-maintained public spaces as a force for building trust and healing divisions in local communities.

The Assembly Guidelines capture the culmination of four years of research and collaboration—with input from 200+ studies, 50+ cities, and dozens of expert advisors—to provide evidence-based design and maintenance strategies for creating cities where people trust each other, have confidence in local institutions, and actively work together to address local priorities.

Funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, this is a pivotal and timely resource for anyone who designs, builds, manages, studies, or advocates for public space. Practitioners can use the Assembly Guidelines in a variety of ways: apply the checklist to a public space project; initiate dialogue about local civic challenges; test tactical, low-cost design interventions; and shape decision-making around capital investments.

CfAD is delighted to share the Assembly Guidelines as an inspiring, practical tool that serves as a call to action for designing and maintaining great public spaces for all.”

Improving Mobility Access through Complete Streets and Mobility Management

In this brief, the National Center for Mobility Management takes a look at mobility management and Complete Streets concepts and then identifies examples of communities where the initiatives — including the people and organizations that lead these efforts— collaborate to establish connected programs. We identify opportunities for mobility management professionals to consider a focus on Complete Streets projects in their work. The philosophy and operations of mobility management and Complete Streets are more similar than not. Both have the purpose of enhancing access, mobility, and equity in communities. Professionals in each of these sectors have opportunities to leverage resources and build sustainable and vibrant projects that ultimately affect the well-being of our communities.

Safe Routes for Older Adults

This guide provides communities with background information on walking and bicycling safety for older adults and tools to make transportation
in California communities age-friendly for all.

Mobility Equity Framework: How to Make Transportation Work for People

For too long, transportation planning has focused on cars rather than people while neglecting communities of color and low-income neighborhoods. This framework offers planners and community advocates a step-by-step guide to a more community-centered transportation planning process that focuses on the mobility needs of communities and puts affected communities at the center of decision-making.

BE Active: Connecting Routes + Destinations

CDC released BE Active: Connecting Routes + Destinations—resources that support the Community Guide’s recommendation to promote and increase physical activity in communities. State and local health departments, public health professionals, and community organizations working on ways to increase physical activity can use the Real World Examples, Implementation Resource Guide, and Visual Guide to guide their implementation process as they aim to build more activity-friendly communities.

Elements of a Complete Streets Policy

Smart Growth America and the National Complete Streets Coalition have revamped the ideal elements of a Complete Streets Policy. The elements serve as a national model of best practices that can be implemented in nearly all types of Complete Streets policies at all levels of governance. For communities considering a Complete Streets policy, this resource serves as a model; for communities with an existing Complete Streets policy, this resource provides guidance on areas for improvements.

Let’s Go For A Walk

Check out this new, free walking audit toolkit from Safe Routes To School National Partnership. Walk audits can be informal and casual, or can include city councilmembers, traffic engineers, and detailed forms. In this toolkit, they give you the tools to hold your own walk audit that will help you achieve the goals of your community.

Get Rolling With a Bike Train Program

This handout covers frequently asked questions for starting a bike train program. This resource is great for school staff and principals!

With a bike train, a group of students bike to school together, accompanied by adults who make sure students stay safe and have fun. A bike train is a fun and easy way for kids to
safely get physical activity on the way to or from school and a great way for students who live too far to conveniently walk to participate in Safe Routes to School.

The Wheels on the Bike Go Round & Round

As more and more people are bicycling in the United States, a bike train can be a strong part of a larger Safe Routes to School program, initiatives that thousands of communities across the nation are establishing.

The purpose of this guide is to provide a simple description of how to plan and organize a bike train. This guide outlines how to put together and run a bike train program at your school, including initial planning considerations, logistics, promotion, training, and evaluation. The guide has tried-and-true methods, resources, and templates to get you off to a quick start. Whether you are familiar with Safe Routes to School or it is brand new to you, this guide will get you on your way, pedaling toward a successful bike train program.

Economic Benefits of PA

The National Physical Activity Society created slides you can use to promote walk/bike-ability.

Arts, Culture and Transportation: A Creative Placemaking Field Scan

Arts, Culture and Transportation: A Creative Placemaking Field Scan is a rigorous national examination of creative placemaking in the transportation planning process. Released in partnership with ArtPlace America, this new resource identifies ways that transportation professionals can integrate artists to deliver transportation projects more smoothly, improve safety, and build community support.

Active Neighborhood Checklist 2.0

This 2 pages observational tool is designed to assess key street-level features of a neighborhood environment that are thought to be related to physical activity behavior. Data collected can be used to generate data to create community awareness or to focus and advocate for environmental improvements.

Complete Street for North Country Communities- Advocacy Toolkit

This resource was developed by one of the CHSC grantees and is universally useful even though it was developed with small upstate communities in mind. It contains several 1-2 page checklist style street and sidewalk assessments as well as action planning tools.

The Built Environment Assessment tool

The Built Environment Assessment Tool (BE Tool) measures the core features and qualities of the built environment that affect health, especially walking, biking, and other types of physical activity.
The core features assessed in the BE Tool include:
Built environment infrastructure—such as road types, curb cuts and ramps, intersections and crosswalks, traffic control, and public transportation.
Walkability—for example, access to safe, attractive sidewalks and paths with inviting features.
Bikeability—such as the presence of bike lane or bike path features.
Recreational sites and structures.
Food environment—such as access to grocery stores, convenience stores, and farmers markets. The tool itself is Appendix D . See the links at the bottom of the page.

Health Disparities Data Widget

Healthy People 2020’s data widget provides an easy way to find health disparities data related to the Healthy People 2020 objectives for the Leading Health Indicators (LHIs). The widget provides charts and graphs of disparities data that can be viewed by disparity type—including disability, education, income, location, race and ethnicity, and sex.

Complete Streets Policy Equity and Public Transit Reports

As Complete Streets Policies are becoming increasingly popular researchers seek to understand how these provisions lead to equitable implementation and higher physical activity levels. These two latest reports from the Institute for Health Research and Policy at the University of Illinois at Chicago examine both the association between complete streets policies and public transit use and equity prioritization in policies.

Tools of Change: A Resource Catalog for Community Health

ChangeLab Solutions created a new catalog of resources for laws and policies to ensure everyday health for all, including access to affordable and healthy food and beverages and creating safe opportunities for physical activity.

Eastern Highlands Health District Toolkit

In 2015, in partnership with the Connecticut Chapter of the American Planning Association (CCAPA), EHHD was awarded a Plan4Health grant by the American Planning Association (APA) and the American Public Health Association (APHA). The focus of this grant is to support EHHD/CCAPA efforts to increase physical activity and access to healthy foods in the region’s towns by helping them link their planning and public health programs with a focus on healthier communities. This toolkit is designed to support the EHHD region towns, as well as any other small, rural towns, in these efforts. The EHHD and its CHART Coalition are actively working to help their communities create places where residents will have more opportunities to be physically active, eat healthy foods, and have fun!

Small Town and Rural Multimodal Networks

This document is intended to be a resource for transportation practitioners in small towns and rural communities. It applies existing national design guidelines in a rural setting and highlights small town and rural case studies. It addresses challenges specific to rural areas, recognizes how many rural roadways are operating today, and focuses on opportunities to make incremental improvements despite the geographic, fiscal, and other challenges that many rural communities face.

Small Town and Rural Design Guide

This online design resource and idea book is intended to help small towns and rural communities support safe, comfortable, and active travel for people of all ages and abilities.

Building Healthier Communities: Integrating Public Health into Planning

Building Healthier Communities: Integrating Public Health into Planning is a free online learning course for planning and health professionals. Designed to complement the American Planning Association’s Planners4Health curriculum, the course outlines what planners and public health professionals need to know and how they can connect their work.

2017 County Health Rankings and Roadmaps

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin’s Population Health Institute released the eighth annual County Health Rankings. The annual rankings provide a snapshot of how health is influenced by where we live, learn, work, and play, and provide a starting point for change in communities

Fighting for Equitable Transportation Fact Sheet

The Safe Routes to School National Partnership recently published a fact sheet, Fighting for Equitable Transportation: Why it Matters, that explores why safe and convenient walking and biking matter for low-income communities and communities of color. This fact sheet is a companion resource to At the Intersection of Active Transportation and Equity: Joining Forces to Make Communities Healthier and Fairer.

Physical Activity Case Studies

Voices for Healthy Kids and The Safe Routes to School National Partnership have released a series of case studies on successful campaigns to increase physical activity. These new resources share stories of state- and local-level campaigns that have implemented Safe Routes to School, Complete Streets, shared use agreements, environmental justice policies, and more. They provide excellent examples of how communities and organizations can advance policies and programs that institutionalize support for walking, biking, physical activity, and healthy communities. You can access the new case studies in the “Resource” section of the following Voices for Healthy Kids toolkits.

Level Up!

CDC developed a new framework to encourage 25 million Americans to “level up” the amount of physical activity they get—either moving from a sedentary lifestyle to a moderately active one, or from a moderately active one to a lifestyle that meets suggested physical activity thresholds. This framework includes rallying public health practitioners to deliver programs that work; creating messaging around active lifestyles; mobilizing partners and training leaders for action; and developing technologies, tools, and data to support physical activity.

Multimodal Strategies for Rural/Small Town Areas

The U.S. Department of Transportation recently released a resource for transportation practitioners in small towns and rural communities titled “Small Town and Rural Multimodal Networks.” It applies existing national design guidelines to rural settings and highlights small town and rural case studies. Challenges specific to rural communities are addressed and focus on opportunities to make incremental improvements despite these geographic, fiscal, and other challenges.

Report Highlights How Complete Streets Support Equity

Researchers at the University of Illinois, Chicago, published a report about how Complete Streets support equity. This report, “Prioritizing Transportation Equity through Complete Streets,” examines results from eight communities that chose to prioritize equity in their Complete Streets policies. The report presents lessons and strategies that the eight communities learned; prioritizing equity was found difficult to put into practice.

Community Health Media Center Resources

The Community Health Media Center (CHMC) provides free and low-cost advertisements and materials for use by health departments and nonprofit organizations. The advertisements and materials focus on the built environment, nutrition, physical activity, obesity, and other chronic diseases or conditions. The CHMC includes television, radio, print, outdoor (e.g., billboard, transit), and web advertisements; as well as infographics and support materials such as brochures, fact sheets, flyers, posters, postcards. Browse the collection by visiting the CHMC website and creating an account.

Transportation Toolkit

The U.S. Department of Transportation released a new toolkit that provides resources and guidance to better understand transportation planning, including accessibility and safe spaces for walking and biking. The toolkit, geared towards members of the public who wish to learn how to engage in the transportation decision-making process at the local, regional, state, and federal levels, defines key transportation acronyms and jargon using both text and graphics. The toolkit also highlights engagement opportunities. The Toolkit can be found here and the Quick Guide here.

A Guide to Building Healthy Streets

A Guide to Building Healthy Streets can help you turn a Complete Streets policy into action! This resource discusses five key steps for effective Complete Streets implementation, highlighting the unique role public health staff can play during each step.

Road Signs Pedcast

In the Road Signs Pedcast (a “walking podcast”), you’ll hear from people on the ground who are building safe and active streets. Each episode discusses one transportation tool that promotes community health. In this first episode, learn about an approach to making existing streets safer—a road diet—with a story from Oakland, California.

Healthy Kids, Healthy Communities: School and Local Government Collaborations

The Local Government Commission and the Cities, Counties, and Schools Partnership produced this fact sheet in April 2007 showing how collaborative efforts between government officials and schools can join forces to reduce childhood obesity. It provides research resources and eight specific examples of policies (some of which are safe routes to schools initiatives), join use agreement, community garden programs, and fast food zoning policies.

Healthy Community Design and Access to Healthy Food Legislation Database

This database of the National Conference of State Legislatures is a valuable tool for anyone interested in state-level legislation related to active living and healthy eating. Users can search by state, topic area(s), year, bill type, bill status, and/or bill number. The website also has a text search feature. This database can be used to develop local policy language and check that local policies are in line with state policies.

How to Create and Implement Healthy General Plans

This toolkit provides a logical progression of steps to make communities more walkeable/bikeable, from engaging stakeholders to policy implementation. It includes strategies to build relationships with public officials and community members, community assessment, instructions on how to write a plan including sample policy language, tools to select which policies might be most successful, and research on the built environment and health outcomes.

Safe Routes to School (Roadmap & Brochure)

Safe Routes to School is a movement that is changing communities and making children healthier by getting children to use their own power to get to and from school. This illustrated roadmap highlights 13 policy options that can help make Safe Routes to School a permanent part of our communities.

Healthiest Practice Open Streets

This website provides a toolkit for implementing Healthiest Practice Open Streets. ‘Open Streets’ are community-based programs that temporarily open selected streets to people, by closing them to cars. By doing this the streets become places where people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds can come out and improve their health.

Bicycling and Walking in the United States: 2016

This report provides a detailed picture of the status of biking and walking in the United States. There is a significant amount of national and state-level data, case studies of communities which have been able to increase access to walking and biking, and tips for implementation in diverse communities.

(Re)Building Downtown: A Guidebook for Revitalization

This guidebook provides municipal governments with tools for economic revitalization that incorporates walkability into downtown areas of business. It includes sections on walkability, public parks, and affordable housing.

CDC CHANGE Tool

This CHANGE tool helps community teams (such as coalitions) develop their community action plan. This tool walks community team members through the assessment process and helps define and prioritize possible areas of improvement. Community-At-Large Sector, Community Institution/Organization Sector; Health Care Sector; School Sector; Work Site Sector

Implementing Complete Streets Public Awareness Campaigns

One of the goals of the NYS Prevention Agenda is to promote attention to the health implications of policies and actions that occur outside of the health sector, including transportation and public safety. Complete streets policies create safer and smarter multi-modal transportation networks for all pedestrians, bicyclists, and transit users of all ages and abilities. Complete streets policies are ultimately geared towards promoting healthy lifestyles. Learn how two New York communities have used public awareness campaigns to encourage their residents to use walking and biking facilities or trail networks that have been established as a result of complete streets projects.

Implementing Complete Streets Projects Using New and Existing Funding

Complete streets policies create safer and smarter multi-modal transportation networks for all pedestrians, bicyclists, and transit users of all ages and abilities. New and existing funding sources can be accessed to help communities make their complete streets projects become a reality. Learn how to take concrete steps that build momentum and a track record, while simultaneously helping the community become more competitive for state and federal funding opportunities. In New York, there are good examples of rural, suburban and urban municipalities that have successfully identified and acted on low-cost solutions to advance their complete streets policies and projects. For larger infrastructure projects, communities have a variety of local, state and federal funding options. Communities should be careful to consider the costs and benefits of these funding options, including the costs of grant-writing, the importance of community buy-in and the difficulties of administering a federal-aid project.

Designing and Evaluation for a Complete Streets Initiative

The value of a complete streets initiative can be demonstrated through program evaluation. Creating a systematic and meaningful evaluation approach requires a step by step process. The purpose of this webinar is to provide participants with the skills to plan and execute an evaluation of a Complete Streets Public Health Intervention which addresses Prevention Agenda Performance Measures.

How to Access and Use Data for Planning Complete Streets Projects

Complete streets policies can create safer and smarter multi-modal environments for all pedestrians, bicyclists, and transit users of all ages and abilities. The right kind of data can be an essential element to planning, implementing, and evaluating projects. This one-hour webinar will provide information on how to access and use national, state, county, and street-level data on motor vehicle traffic, bicycle, and pedestrian use, injuries, hospitalizations, and fatalities.

Complete Streets: Making them Happen!

This webinar shows how to tailor Complete Streets talking points, identify Complete Streets demonstration projects, and develop strategies to measure progress implementing Complete Streets projects.

The Best Complete Streets Policies of 2016

The National Complete Streets Coalition examines and scores Complete Streets policies each year, comparing adopted policy language to the ideal. Ideal policies refine a community’s vision for transportation, provide for many types of users, complement community needs, and establish a flexible project delivery approach necessary for an effective Complete Streets process and outcome. Different types of policy statements are included in this examination, including legislation, resolutions, executive orders, departmental policies, and policies adopted by an elected board.

Introduction to Complete Streets

The presentation demonstrates the variety of options in creating roads that are safe for all users, regardless of age, ability, or mode of transportation.

Complete Streets: Guide to Answering the Costs Question

This guide provides four overarching points to make in answering cost questions. The effectiveness of each depends upon the listener—some will resonate more with one audience than another. We give general guidance to the most appropriate audiences for each point, as well as general tips when discussing these topics in your community. We encourage you to use these examples as a starting point. Each point made below is illustrated in a companion PowerPoint slide. A thumbnail image of the slide and its corresponding slide number appear next to the text examples. You should not use the whole PowerPoint presentation to make your case locally. Instead, select the slides that are appropriate to your audience and situation and augment those slides with local facts and stories.

Complete Streets: Changing Policy

Presentation, along with presenters notes, to facilitate a discussion of Complete Streets in one’s community. Includes background on what Complete Streets are and provides example policies

Complete Streets Local Policy Workbook

This workbook provides explanations of the various forms a Complete Streets (CS) policy may take and the elements of an ideal CS policy. This workbook is intended to be used during the development of a city or county CS policy.

Safe Routes to School National Partnership

This website offers depth of expertise, a national support network, and know-how to help make communities and schools safer, healthier, and more active. Includes factsheets, guides, publications, webinars and more related to SRTS, shared use, healthy communities and active transportation

Complete Streets

This website provides an overview of benefits of Complete Streets (CS), as well as villages/towns/cities with CS policies or resolutions, and design guidance

Stories from Small Towns

This report provides examples of structural changes in small towns (<25,000 pop) that improved their walkability, showing that these types of changes can work in small towns too, not just big cities.

Complete Streets Complete Networks Rural Contexts

This guide is intended to help planners, engineers, and decision-makers understand the Complete Streets roadway design process, and how it can be applied in smaller communities. It is intended as a companion to Complete Streets, Complete Networks, A Manual for the Design of Active Transportation.

Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans

The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (PAG) are an essential resource for health professional and policymakers. Based on the latest science, they provide guidance on how children and adults can improve their health through physical activity. It also provides ways to help consumers understand the benefits of physical activity and how to make it a part of their regular routine.