Active Design for Healthier Affordable Housing: A Public Health Nudge
Purpose: To assess the health impact of living in LEED affordable AD housing compared to residents of similar LEED non-AD housing in the South Bronx, New York.
Methods: At lease-signing and one year later, tenants in new AD affordable housing completed PA self-assessments and trained researchers obtained body measurements. Residents of neighboring affordable housing without AD participated concurrently.
Results: Thirty four adults were recruited from AD and 29 from non-AD buildings, retention was 55% (n=19) and 52% (n=15) respectively at one year. The AD tenants’ BMI and high-risk waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) remained stable over the study period, while non-AD residents increased 6% in overweight and obese BMI and WHR categories. There was a 14% and 13% increase in AD female residents achieving MVPA and VPA recommendations respectively, with no improvements seen in non-AD group. There was a 32% increase in residents that walked up 1-28 flights of stairs per week at home in the AD group compared to 20% increase in non-AD.
Conclusion: This pilot project supports the PA health benefits of AD affordable housing, especially in females, who carry the largest burden of the obesity epidemic in low-income, urban communities. Broader adoption of AD guidelines is warranted.
Learning Areas:Advocacy for health and health education
Environmental health sciences
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related public policy
List active design measures that developers can include to encourage physical activity. Describe the impact of active design in affordable housing on physical activity.
Keyword(s): Obesity, Healthy Housing
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the principal investigator on this projects and other projects on evaluating the impact of Green affordable housing on health.
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.