Global Montreal | Walkable cities are healthier, study says: "Walkability was measured by a tool called the “Walkability Index,” designed to evaluate neighbourhood design features like residential density, retail ratio and land-use mix. It showed that the shape of neighbourhoods directly affected physical activity levels. According to Monica Campbell, director of Healthy Public Policy for Toronto Public Health, for every person in Toronto who preferred living in an auto-oriented neighbourhood, 12 preferred to live in a walkable neighbourhood. In fact, Toronto residents walked for utilitarian reasons 2.7 times as often and used transit 2.5 times as often, as residents in the least walkable neighbourhoods.
The situation was similar in not only Vancouver, but also for those living in suburbs.
“The neighbourhood has a strong effect on behaviour, in terms of how physically active they are and how healthy they are,” said Campbell. “What we find in our suburban areas is that people who live in that sprawled condition is that they have a greater body weight, the obesity rates are about 30 per cent higher.” "
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