Active design guidelines

Promoting physical activity and health in design
Design Architecture Physical fitness United States of America

The Active Design Guidelines (2010) provides architects and urban designers with a manual of strategies for creating healthier buildings, streets, and urban spaces, based on the latest academic research and best practices in the field. The Guidelines includes:

Urban design strategies for creating neighborhoods, streets, and outdoor spaces that encourage walking, bicycling, and active transportation and recreation

Building design strategies for promoting active living where we work and live and play, through the placement and design of stairs, elevators, and indoor and outdoor spaces

Discussion of synergies between active design with sustainable and universal design initiatives such as LEED and PlaNYC

The Active Design Guidelines was developed by a partnership of the New York City Departments of Design and Construction, Health and Mental Hygiene, Transportation, City Planning, and Office of Management and Budget, working with leading architectural and planning academics, and with help from the American Institute of Architects New York Chapter. Other City agencies that have contributed to the Guidelines includes the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities, Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability, Department of Buildings, Department of Parks and Recreation, School Construction Authority, Housing Preservation and Development, and the Department for the Aging.

The Center for Active Design was initially created in 2013 to promote the use of Active Design to a national and international audience, as well as to continue the process of translating evidence to inform practical design strategies to support healthy and engaged communities.


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