Calendar of Events

Wed 01.27.2010

Active Design Guidelines Launch

When: 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 27

Where: At The Center   

The Active Design Guidelines were developed by a partnership of the New York City Departments of Design and Construction, Health and Mental Hygiene, Transportation, City Planning, and Office of Management and Budget, working with leading architectural and planning academics, and with help from the American Institute of Architects New York Chapter. Other City agencies that have contributed to the Guidelines include the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities, Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability, Department of Buildings, Department of Parks and Recreation, School Construction Authority, Housing Preservation and Development, and the Department for the Aging.

NYC Commissioners David Burney, Dept of Design & Construction; Amanda Burden, FAICP, Dept. of City Planning; Thomas Farley, Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene; and Janette Sadik-Khan, DOT will be present at the launch event to discuss the role of their Agencies in the development of and future plans for use of the Active Design Guidelines.

Active design is critical to addressing obesity and its related diseases–the fastest growing epidemics of our time, while also supporting the goal of sustainability.

In the 19th and early 20th centuries, architects and urban reformers helped to defeat infectious diseases like cholera and tuberculosis by designing better buildings, streets, neighborhoods, clean water systems, and parks. In the 21st century, designers can again play a crucial role in combating the most rapidly growing public health epidemics of our time: obesity and its impact on related chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers.

Today, physical inactivity and unhealthy diet are second only to tobacco as the main causes of premature death in the United States. A growing body of research suggests that evidence-based architectural and urban design strategies can increase regular physical activity and healthy eating.

The Active Design Guidelines provide architects and urban designers with a manual of strategies for creating healthier buildings, streets, and urban spaces, based on the latest academic research and best practices in the field.

The Guidelines include:
Urban design strategies for creating neighborhoods, streets, and outdoor spaces that encourage walking, bicycling, and active transportation and recreation.
Building design strategies for promoting active living where we work and live—for example, through the placement and design of stairs, elevators, and indoor and outdoor spaces.
Discussion of Synergies between active design and sustainable design initiatives such as LEED and PlaNYC.

Get your copy of the Active Design Guidelines on January 27th, or visit after the launch for the electronic version.

Work related to the Guidelines has been supported by the Milbank Memorial Fund and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

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