Online Program

Change in the built environment: A descriptive analysis of six u.s. cities

Monday, November 4, 2013

Jana Hirsch, MES, Center for Social Epidemiology and Population Health, Department of Epidemiology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Joe Grengs, MURP, PhD, Department of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Daniel Rodriguez, PhD, Department of City and Regional Planning, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC
Ana V. Diez Roux, MD, PhD, School of Public Health Department of Epidemiology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Since the mid-1990s there has been a resurging interest in modifying the built environment to support healthier lifestyles. However, limited literature quantifies the amount and type of changes that are occurring in the built environment. Even less is known about whether changes are occurring equally across neighborhoods, to reduce health disparities, or unequally across neighborhoods, deepening health disparities. This research aims to identify changes in multiple features of the built environment during a 10 year period (2000-2010) in a sample of neighborhoods (defined by census tract) from six different U.S. cities (Los Angeles, CA; Chicago, IL; Baltimore, MD; St. Paul, MN; Forsyth County, NC; and New York, NY). This research will also investigate neighborhood socio-demographic predictors of change, addressing important unanswered questions about the role of the built environment in reducing, maintaining, or even worsening health disparities. Neighborhoods will be characterized using direct assessment of land use, transit, and road characteristics from each municipality and commercially available business listings linked to 2000 census tracts using Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Descriptive statistics will include neighborhood built environment characteristics at baseline (2000) and change per five years in these built environment metrics. Socio-demographic data for each neighborhood will be collected from Census 2000 and American Community Survey (ACS) 2005-2009. Multilevel regression models will assess associations of initial levels of and change in neighborhood socio-demographic factors with change in the neighborhood built environment. Small-scale spatial patterns of neighborhood change will be mapped and assessed within each city using techniques of spatial statistics.

Learning Areas:

Environmental health sciences
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe changes in the built environment over 2000-2010. Discuss patterns of change in the built environment within the context of neighborhood socio-demographic characteristics.

Keyword(s): Environmental Health, Change

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been researching the associations of the built environment (both food and physical activity) with behavioral outcomes. My dissertation research is focused on changes in the built environment and their associations with changes in behavior.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.