Focus on Walkability ‘Can Make LGs a Population Drawcard’
Australians overwhelmingly want to live locally in walkable neighbourhoods close to parks, a new Heart Foundation study has revealed.
The survey also found that a sense of safety is high on the priority list for Australians when deciding where to live.
The foundation surveyed 2895 Australians on “what matters most to them in making neighbourhoods desirable, liveable and healthy”, with findings presented in its What Australia Wants: Living locally in walkable neighbourhoods report.
Heart Foundation Director, Active Living, Trevor Shilton said: “The ability to ‘live locally’ is enabled by having a neighbourhood where the things that you need such as fresh, healthy food, safe neighbourhood streets, and daily destinations are near to your home, ideally in walking distance”.
He said the survey found that:
- Nine in 10 Australians feel that having access to fresh food within a convenient distance from home is very/somewhat important to them when deciding where to live;
- Nearly nine in 10 people feel that having a sense of safety is very/somewhat important to them when deciding where to live;
- Just over eight in 10 value having natural elements such as trees and plants;
- Around seven in 10 Australians value traffic-calming measures;
- Around seven in 10 also value a sense of community;
- Eight in 10 people surveyed feel that having quality public open space close to them is very/somewhat important to them when deciding where to live; and
- Nearly eight in 10 people surveyed said it’s very/somewhat important to them that they can be active in their local area.
The research on what makes neighborhoods desirable, liveable and healthy is set within the Healthy Active by Design framework, a website created by the Heart Foundation to highlight how best-practice planning and design of buildings, streets, towns, and cities can improve Australians’ cardiovascular health.
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