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Active design (2015)

planning for health and wellbeing through sport and physical activity

Sport England has produced Active Design guidelines to get more people moving through suitable design and layout of cities, towns and villages. Ten principles for active design are presented in the document, which has been developed to inspire and inform the design and layout of spaces in towns, villages and cities.

Active Design is a key guidance document intended to unify health, design and planning by promoting the right conditions and environments for individuals and communities to lead active lifestyles. Designed for use by planners, health professionals and developers, the document presents practical guidance and principles that can be used in day to day work.

The ten active design principles are:

  1. Activity for all – enabling those who want to be active, whilst encouraging those who are inactive to become active.
  2. Walkable communities – Creating the conditions for active travel between all locations.
  3. Connected walking and cycling routes – Prioritising active travel through safe, integrated walking and cycling routes.
  4. Co-location of community facilities – Creating multiple reasons to visit a destination, minimising the number and length of trips and increasing the awareness and convenience of opportunities to participate in sport and physical activity.
  5. Network of multifunctional open space – Providing multifunctional spaces opens up opportunities for sport and physical activity.
  6. High quality streets and spaces – Well designed streets and spaces support and sustain a broader variety of users and community activities.
  7. Appropriate infrastructure – Providing and facilitating access to facilities and other infrastructure to enable all members of society to take part in sport and physical activity.
  8. Active buildings – Providing opportunities for activity inside and around buildings.
  9. Management, maintenance, monitoring and evaluation – A high standard of management, maintenance, monitoring and evaluation is essential to ensure the long-term desired functionality of all spaces.
  10. Activity promotion and local champions – Physical measures need to be matched by community and stakeholder ambition, leadership and engagement.

Achieving as many of the ten principles of active design as possible will optimise the opportunities for active and healthy lifestyles. They have been identified by drawing on urban design practice and practical examples to promote the creation of environments which offer the greatest potential to enable individuals and communities to lead active and healthy lifestyles.

Literatuurverwijzing: Copsey, P., Brown, K., Carr, J., Farrell, P., Lappin, M., Holt, R., ... Pinto, A. (2015). Active design: planning for health and wellbeing through sport and physical activity. Sport England.

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