Monthly theme: Healthy environments

Monthly theme: Healthy environments

Through our program activities, we seek solutions to today’s most pressing social issues. Every month we highlight one of these programs and this September it is Healthy Environments.

Many cities and municipalities focus on road safety, healthy mobility, car-free Sundays and sporting events. After the holiday period and with cooler weather conditions, work and living spaces are becoming the daily reference environment again. This means that it is time to focus on healthy buildings, cities and municipalities. Find out more about our recent research reports and assignments on health and wellbeing in this article.

Report and podcast about healthy buildings and cities

In June we launched the second report Healthy buildings, cities and you in the Urban Insight series on the theme ‘Urban Health and Wellbeing’. Sweco experts highlight specific data, facts and science needed to plan and design safe and resilient urban environments.

This month, we are launching a series of podcasts in which we discuss with leading minds whether such a thing as the world’s healthiest building actually exists. What is involved and where are the newest insights tested? Be sure to tune in and listen to what experts from the World Health Organisation, the Technical University of Eindhoven and the project developer British Land have to say.

Green-blue spaces as a building block – Supporting local authorities on green-blue spaces, health and resilience

How do green-blue spaces contribute to health and how can we increase the availability and impact for all residents in cities and towns? At the request of the Department of Environment and Spatial Development and the Agency for Care and Health, we are working on a conceptual framework, literature review and collection of guidelines for planning, design and management of green-blue spaces. This assignment provides insight into how health gains can be upgraded by structurally improving the quality of green-blue spaces in the immediate vicinity of residential and living environments, and this in an urban context or near residential centres. We are also attempting to anticipate the expected climate change and the current health crisis. More information is available here.

Health impact assessment of urban renewal projects

Since the onset of the pandemic, there have been increasing calls to systematically examine investments in urban programs and infrastructure for their health effects. The World Health Organisation promotes health impact assessment (HIA) as a mechanism to take health risks into account at the design stage, but also to guide investment choices based on potential health gains. Several countries have already integrated such a tool into their planning processes. The Brussels Capital Region has asked us to develop a procedure adapted to the urban region. It is based on a pilot project that follows a continuous planning process. Want to learn more?

Our website contains everything you need to know about the ‘Healthy Environments’ program and much more. See it here.