Built Environment


HC Link Resources


Online discussion: Improve the Built Environment in Your Community

Resources | Blog Recap

HC Link | 2017

Street design, parks and green spaces, access to food and shops, recreation and transportation options all affect our health through nutrition, physical activity, safety, mental health, and connectedness to the community. In this online discussion, participants asked their built environment questions to consultant Paul Young, landcape architect and health promoter.


Online discussion: Improve the Built Environment to Promote Food Access in your community

Resources | Blog Recap

HC Link | 2017

Ensuring that our communities’ built environment can provide adequate access to nutritious food is one way that we can positively affect our health. In this online discussion, participants asked questions to consultant Paul Young and had the opportunity to peer share.


Webinar: An Intro to engaging in the review of your Official Plan

HC Link | 2015

This webinar provided a brief overview of the policy and planning system in Ontario and the processes, tools and the benefits of getting involved in an Official Plan review.



LiveWorkPlaythumbWhere We Live, Work & Play - Building environmentally & socially healthier communities

Slides | Recording 1 | Recording 2 | Recording 3

HC Link | 2013

This workshop shared research outlining what makes a healthy community, efforts across Ontario to understand the health impacts of car-dependant community building, and examples of how communities might take action to improve how we build.


Building Healthy Communities webinar series


Evaluating Impacts of Development Proposals  

Presenter 1 Slides | Presenter 2 Slides

HC Link | 2013

This webinar covered the factors that shape new land developments and opportunities to become engaged in planning and decision-making about developments and community change.


Influencing Changes to the Built Environment  

SlidesPresenter 2 Slides

HC Link | 2013

This webinar presented information and examples of the features of a healthy built community and opportunities for engagement in municipal planning processes and official plan reviews.


Screen shot 2012-07-12 at 10.21.11 AM
Building Healthy Communities: Making the Healthy Choice the Easy Choice

Heart Health Resource Centre | 2008  

This presentation provides practical information and advice on creating a vision, framework and momentum for the establishment of an Active Community.


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Ground-breaking Strategies for Building Active Communities

Heart Health Resource Centre | 2007

This newsletter explores the relationship between the built environment and residents’ physical activity levels, and makes the argument that land use decisions should be informed by input from health agencies. Planning walkable, active communities requires partnerships and input from a variety of sectors that have not traditionally worked together including: planners, municipal politicians and staff, conservation authorities, educators, health agencies and various interest groups.




Other Resources & Documents

urban design


The Lancet journal series: Urban design, transport, and health

The Lancet | 2016

This 3-part series explores how integrated multisector city planning, including urban design and transport planning, can be used as an important and currently underused force for health and wellbeing within the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals in both high-income countries and low-income and middle-income countries.



ATpolicyToolsThumbWebinar: Active Transportation Policy Tools

Canadian Partnership Against Cancer | 2016

This webinar provides and overview of active transportation policy tools and resources developed by the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer, including the Prevention Policies Directory, Canadian Municipal and Provincial/Territorial Active Transportation Policy Maps and Active Transportation Policy Case Studies, and highlights how they can inform and add value to active transportation work.



Open Streets Trends and Opportunities

8 80 Cities | 2016

The Policy Brief has great data and figures to help you make the case for Open Streets in your community.




Building Healthy Places Toolkit

Urban Land Institute | 2015

The Toolkit provides 21 evidence-based recommendations to create places that contribute to healthier people and communities that are supported by action-oriented evidence-based and best practice strategies. The report also includes seven schematics that illustrate how the recommendations can be applied.






Fast Facts about Canada's Neighbourhoods and Physical Activity

Public Health Agency of Canada | 2012

The report presents data compiled from the 2011 Canadian Community Health Survey Rapid Response Module on Neighbourhood Environments, including the number of Canadians who live in neighbourhoods that promote leisure-time physical activity and active transportation (walking or biking to work or school).   (French)





Healthy Communities Practice Guide

Canadian Institute of Planners | 2012

Designed to help planners promote healthier communities, and to understand how health practitioners can support them in attaining that shared goal.



CLASPthumbHealthy Canada by Design CLASP Fact sheets

Canadian Institute of Planners, Heart and Stroke Foundation, Public Health Agency of Canada, Canadian Institute for Health Information

This fact sheet series summarize findings from Canadian built environment research conducted between 2007 and 2011.

Fact Sheet 1: Active Transportation, Health and Community Design: What is the Canadian evidence saying?

Fact Sheet 2: Active Living, Children & Youth: What is the Canadian evidence saying?

Fact Sheet 3: Health Equity and Community Design: What is the Canadian evidence saying?




Healthy Communities and Planning for Active Transportation

Ontario Professional Planners Institute | 2012

OPPI calls upon planners and other stakeholders to support an active transportation system that is safe, efficient, convenient, equitable, and based upon sound policy and planning principles.




Sustainable City Regions in Ontario - A Call to Action

Ontario Professional Planners Institute | 2011

OPPI calls upon planners, public decision making bodies and the private sector to make healthy community planning a priority. Action is needed to support strong, livable and healthy communities that enhance social well being and are economically sound.





Planning By Design: a healthy communities handbook

Ontario Professional Planners Institute and Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing | 2009

This handbook offers ideas on how places can be planned and designed more sustainably for healthy, active living and to retain and attract residents, investors and visitors.



8-80 Cities

8-80 Cities is a non-profit organization based on a simple concept: if you build a city that's great for an 8 year old and an 80 year old, you build a city that's great for everyone. They specialize in transforming cities into places where people can walk, bike, access public transit and visit vibrant parks and public places.


Canada Walks

Canada Walks seeks to create communities in which active transportation is safe, practical, and inviting. It is an initiative of Green Communities Canada that brings together a diverse group of projects (such as Active & Safe Routes to School and Walk Friendly Ontario) whose focus is on promoting walking and walkable communities.


Complete Streets for Canada

A policy and design hub from the Toronto Centre for Active Transportion for building safe and inviting streets for all. The website provides case studies, policy expertise, news and the latest research.


Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing

The Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing’s website includes a number of resources and tools related to land use planning and development, Citizens' Guides to Land-use Planning and well as the Provincial Policy Statement, the cornerstone of Ontario’s land use planning system, that houses the province’s policies concerning land use planning and development.


Ontario Professional Planners Institute

OPPI provides leadership in achieving healthy and sustainable communities in Ontario through the Institute’s Calls to Action and Policy Papers on issues related to land use planning and active transportation. OPPI sees this as critical as where we work, live, and play is vitally important to the quality of our lives.


Share the Road

The Share the Road Cycling Coalition is a provincial cycling advocacy organization created to unite cycling organizations from across Ontario and work with and on behalf of municipalities to enhance their ability to make their communities more bicycle- friendly.