NACDD’s Healthy Communities in the News

Cleveland MPO in Cleveland, Tennessee, Wins Award for Walkability Action Plan

The National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD) congratulates the Cleveland, Tennessee, walkability team for winning the 2017 Outstanding Project/Program/Tool award in the Small Community category for Tennessee’s American Planning Association’s (APA) Transformation of Space awards in October. The Cleveland MPO created an interdisciplinary team, and was selected to receive travel assistance to attend NACDD’s 2017 Walkability Action Institute.

Due to the team’s participation in WAI, the team developed a comprehensive 10-year plan to bring their Connect Cleveland efforts into fruition. The Connect Cleveland Walkability Action Plan consists of the region’s plans to involve community member input, encourage people to walk more, and engage in active transportation to places within the community. The plan also addresses such key values as education; social justice; consumer preferences; environmental benefits; service to neighborhoods; expanding connectivity; and improving equity among people and places. The award was given based on originality and innovation; transferability; quality; effectiveness and results; comprehensiveness; public participation; and roles and responsibilities.

Please join us congratulating our Cleveland, Tennessee, walkability team for continuing to take “steps” in the right direction!

Olean in Cattaraugus County, New York, Receives Livable Communities Award!

Olean, located in Cattaraugus County, New York, received its fourth award within a year in late September. The Partners for Livable Western New York presented the Livable Communities Award to Olean for the city’s $8.85 million-dollar reconstruction project. Vehicle speeds were reduced through the installation of five roundabouts, angled parking, and bicycle lanes. The change has resulted in more mixed-use development, economic revitalization, and creating a more walkable community. 

The reconstruction project also included the addition of four, fully inclusive crosswalks, so community members with disabilities can safely navigate the crosswalks at the roundabout locations. The addition was due in part to the county’s involvement in a national pilot project titled, Reaching People with Disabilities through Healthy Communities. The county’s healthy community coalition worked with Olean’s elected and planning officials to design inclusive crosswalks. Kudos to Olean, New York, for adding the Livable Communities Award to its trophy case!

Power Wheelchair Charging Station Dedicated at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus, Ohio!

On Nov. 16, the very first power wheelchair charging station was installed and dedicated at the Ohio Statehouse. This marks the second statehouse in the country to install a power wheelchair charging station behind Oregon’s leading efforts earlier this year. 

The power wheelchair charging station expands Adams County’s participation in the national Reaching People with Disabilities through Healthy Communities pilot project. Through the pilot project, NACDD is working with the CDC Disability and Health Branch, five states, and 10 local communities to implement inclusive healthy community changes in the community setting. The change specifically seeks to allow residents using power wheelchairs to be able to recharge their wheelchair batteries in community settings without worrying about the chair’s batteries dying, which adds a sense of belonging and security for residents who use power wheelchairs. 

Darrin Umbarger’s forward thinking in Pendleton, Oregon (also a participant in the national pilot project), shared his power wheelchair charging station invention with his fellow project participants. Now, residents who use power wheelchairs in multiple locations, communities, and states can now participate in active living opportunities alongside fellow residents. NACDD thanks the Adams County Health and Wellness Coalition for installing these stations throughout Adams County and for pursuing the first installation at the Ohio Statehouse!

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