2018 National Planning Conference

Navigating Intersections of Health and Transportation

Sunday, April 14, 2019 from 2:45 p.m. - 4 p.m. PDT

CM | 1.25

Activity Type: Educational Sessions

Activity ID: NPC198113

Location: 2008

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  • Observe how community engagement informs health considerations in corridor-based planning studies.
  • Learn how to integrate health impact assessments into transportation investments to benefit the greatest number of people.
  • Examine how regional and local partnerships can be leveraged to implement projects that strengthen walkable, accessible, and affordable neighborhoods.


The health of Floridians, residents of the third-most populous state, directly affects the health of the United States. Whether they suffer from unsafe streets or long commutes by car, Floridians are growing unhealthier each day. Obesity, heart disease, diabetes are on the rise. And we've seen an uptick in pedestrian fatalities and traffic crashes. What can we do as transportation planners and designers?

Think big!!

This session focuses on how Florida's MPOs are building a healthier Florida through transportation infrastructure investments. In Central Florida, MetroPlan Orlando is promoting health in all transportation policies, an initiative that includes an innovative corridor study focused on health and community engagement. The unprecedented effort is reaching people who have never participated in a transportation planning study. Along the East Coast, the Palm Beach TPA is using health impact assessments to inform not only Complete Streets initiatives and regional agency cooperation, but also premium transit planning, the location of transit-oriented developments, and locating specific transit stations in areas that will benefit the most people. In the Tampa Bay area, Forward Pinellas is focusing on the 20-Minute Neighborhoods initiative: an effort to overcome gaps and barriers in the transportation network to support active transportation that connects low- and moderate-income residents with everyday destinations and transit service.

Following brief presentations by each panelist, the moderator will facilitate a discussion to answer questions about process and lessons learned that planners can take back to their communities. Learn how community engagement informs health considerations, how proposed transportation and transit investments can benefit the greatest number of people, and how to work with regional (such as the state department of health) and local agencies to implement projects that strengthen walkable, accessible, and affordable neighborhoods.

Session Speakers

Whit Blanton, FAICP
Forward Pinellas
Clearwater, FL

John P. Weesner
Kittelson & Associates, Inc.
Orlando, FL

Elizabeth Whitton, AICP
MetroPlan Orlando
Tallahassee, FL

Valerie Neilson, AICP
Palm Beach Transportation Planning Agency
Greenacres, FL