Policies to Promote Active Travel: Evidence from Reviews of the Literature

Built Environment and Health (MJ Nieuwenhuijsen and AJ de Nazelle, Section Editors)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Built Environment and Health

Abstract

Purpose of review

While many levels of government recognize that walking and cycling (active travel) are critical to healthy cities, a continued challenge is to identify and prioritize strategies that will increase walking and cycling for transportation. We review evidence on policies that can increase active travel.

Recent findings

The reviews included here conclude that policies related to active travel may operate at various levels of the socio-ecological framework, including society, cities, routes or individuals. The provision of convenient, safe and connected walking and cycling infrastructure is at the core of promoting active travel, but policies may work best when implemented in comprehensive packages.

Summary

There is strong evidence that active travel can result in substantial health benefits. However, there remains considerable uncertainty about the exact effects of specific policies on walking or cycling rates or safety. Further research is needed to quantify the impact of specific policies or packages of policies, especially across different settings or for different population segments.

Keywords

Active travel Policy Bicycle Walking Bicycling 

References

Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Meghan Winters
    • 1
  • Ralph Buehler
    • 2
  • Thomas Götschi
    • 3
  1. 1.Faculty of Health SciencesSimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada
  2. 2.School of Public and International AffairsVirginia TechAlexandriaUSA
  3. 3.Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Prevention InstituteUniversity of ZurichZurichSwitzerland

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