Decade of Design – Report on the State of Health + Urbanism (130 page pdf, Alan Berger, MIT, Dec. 11, 2013)
Today we review a report from MIT which examines the state of urban health in the eight largest cities in the USA and explores ways to improve it socially, economically and environmentally, while testing the validity of several widely held assumptions. One belief, for example is the greater urban density can be linked to improved urban health while data suggest the opposite when it comes to water quality and biodiversity in cities. Adding more sidewalks to encourage more exercise from walking also puts people at risk if the sidewalks are close to vehicle emissions from heavy traffic. Measures of urban health for planners are different and sometimes incompatible with those used by public health specialists. The report contains rich, informative and differing assessments of each of the cities considered.
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