Walking and cycling
Lack of physical activity is linked to over 3 million deaths per year globally. Inclusion and improvement in the quality of pedestrian and bicycle paths encourages people to walk and cycle, thereby promoting a healthy lifestyle. Other interventions targeting the built environment have been shown to enhance the appeal of physically active forms of transport.
- improvements in urban aesthetic features and attractiveness;
- decreased travel time between neighbourhoods;
- access to green and recreational spaces;
- good lighting; and
- road safety.
Safe infrastructure for walking and cycling is also a pathway for achieving greater health equity. For the poorest urban sector who often cannot afford private vehicles, walking and cycling can provide a form of transport while reducing the risk of heart disease, stroke, certain cancers, diabetes, and even death. Accordingly, improved active transport is not only healthy; it is also equitable and cost-effective.