Designing Active Communities: A Coordinated Action Framework for Planners and Public Health Professionals

in Journal of Physical Activity and Health
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Community design can have a positive or negative influence on the physical activity level of residents. The complementary expertise of professionals from both planning and public health is needed to build active communities. The current study aimed to develop a coordinated framework for planners and public health professionals to enhance the design of active communities.


Planners and public health professionals working in Ontario, Canada were recruited to participate in a concept mapping process to identify ways they should work together to enhance the design of active communities.


This process generated 72 actions that represent collaborative efforts planners and public health professionals should engage in when designing active communities. These actions were then organized by importance and feasibility. This resulted in a coordinated action framework that includes 19 proximal and 6 distal coordinated actions for planners and public health professionals.


Implementation of the recommended actions has the potential to make a difference in community design as a way to enhance physical activity in community members. This Coordinated Action Framework provides a way to address physical inactivity from an environmental and policy standpoint.

The authors are with the School of Kinesiology and Health Studies, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada.

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