Urban Design for Health

Barking Riverside in London and Northstowe in Cambridgeshire are two Healthy New Town demonstrator sites approved as part of a commitment in the NHS Five Year Forward View to dramatically improve population health, and integrate health and care services as new places are built and take shape.

Catherine represented Care City as co-lead of the Barking Riverside Healthy New Town initiative development phase. This work culminated in a funded delivery plan based on researcher and practitioner input of evidence and good practice alongside extensive community engagement to ascertain local priorities, opportunities and capacities. Integral to our approach were the 10 Healthy New Town Principles we developed and which are embedded in the S106 agreement between the council and developer. To put these principles into practice, Catherine worked with Sustrans, Living Streets and Professor Nick Tyler of University College London on a suite of projects investigating how best to design access and mobility for all ages into a major new housing development.  These projects contribute to the evidence base around healthy ageing, ‘place attachment’ and the role of ‘blue space’ in enhancing health and wellbeing. Importantly, our community co-design methodology will inform further work when Professor Tyler establishes a new and innovative community-centred research laboratory in Dagenham.

In Northstowe, Catherine worked with Chris Blandford Associates and Tim Gill of Rethinking Childhood to devise a play and healthy living strategy which will embed lifelong health, activity and exploration into the new town’s physical environment.

In association with Iken Associates