The Mansfield area may soon become more walkable.
According to the CDC, only 20% of American adults and less than 30% of high school students meet the minimum physical activity guidelines. The lack of regular physical activity can lead to onset of many chronic diseases, some cancers, poor academic achievement, and even early death. These and many related issues were discussed in the recent release of the United States Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Promote Walking and Walkable Communities, including a list of actions that can be taken to reverse some of the current physical activity trends and could improve walkability and access to safe activity options for the long-term.
Enter the Walkability Action Institute, which is a multi-day applied learning experience for interdisciplinary regional and state teams to learn about specific strategies for improving walkability and community design so that communities are more walkable and “wheel”able. This action institute is the result of a partnership between NACDD, the CDC Division of Nutrition Physical Activity and Obesity, and a host of other national experts and leaders throughout the country, including Active Living By Design, America Walks, and the National Physical Activity Society.
This week, Richland County Regional Planning announced that a Richland County Team has been selected as one of 10 cross-disciplinary MPO-level teams around the nation to participate in the 2017 Step-It-Up Walkability Action Institute sponsored by The National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD).
Teams had to include four members representatives of, MPO, public health, engineering, and an elected official. Teams also had the option of adding one or two additional team members from a diverse list of prospective partners.
Richland County team members are:
The 10 selected teams will receive travel assistance to attend the course and must commit to participating in 100 percent of the project deliverables which include a Team Action Plan and participation in NACDD Community of Practice. This institute is not just a course but it is a full project opportunity that could put the Richland County team in a position to leverage future funds and reshape our community for years to come.
The other 9 teams selected were: