Healthy Spaces & Places Healthy Spaces & Places

Who is this for?


If you are an elected government representative this website is for you. It aims to give you knowledge, tools and connections to help ‘make a difference’ in your area. It deals with one of the critical health issues affecting communities across Australia and one on which your constituents may be looking to you for leadership.

That critical health issue is the identified epidemic of overweight and obesity. Elected representatives have opportunities and responsibilities for helping to ensure that spaces and places are more people friendly, and as such bring about short- medium- and long-term health benefits for individuals and communities, and with them social and economic benefits.

Through Healthy Spaces and Places you can be better informed about the latest research linking health and planning and design. You can also refer people to this site as a single source of information about the health and wellbeing benefits of spaces and places that are designed and built for people to walk, cycle, take part in all forms of active recreation and use public transport.

Healthy Spaces and Places provides government with opportunities to:

  • read the research which tells us why quality built environments (places) are so important to our health, fitness and happiness
  • look at examples of well-designed places that encourage walking, cycling and public transport usage
  • better understand what it is that planners, designers and related groups should consider when planning, designing and building places so that those places best support people’s lifelong health and wellbeing
  • understand what is required in terms of planning, design and infrastructure that gives priority to walking, cycling, physical recreation and use of public transport.

The information on this site includes:

Using the glossary

The glossary on this website aims to help bridge gaps between the ‘languages’ of the different groups that may have impeded understandings and actions in the past, especially between planning and design professionals, health professionals and the community.

Much thought has gone into de-jargonising the language used, wherever possible. However, some terms are difficult to explain in simpler ways and/or removing them can seem like ‘dumbing down’ language in ways that is confusing.  So, when there are terms that are not familiar to you please refer to the glossary for explanations.  

Last updated on 6th August, 2009

Sponsors This project was funded by the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.