What is a liveable and healthy city? | With Melanie Davern, Belen Zapata-Diomedi
Active MobilityCreating Public RealmPollution Reduction
EIT Urban Mobility went to Melbourne to discover two great initiatives aimed at improving the quality of life of the city dwellers. Dr. Melanie Davern from RMIT University and Australian Urban Observatory explains what livable cities are and how urban mobility initiatives, such as the Australian Urban Observatory’s digital planning platform can contribute to the deployment of healthier and more liveable spaces.
What is a liveable city?
A liveable city is somewhere that’s safe, socially inclusive, and socially cohesive. It's also environmentally sustainable. It's connected by walking paths, cycling trails, as well as public transport that connects us to our local community services, shops, employment, education, affordable and diverse housing, as well as public open space and culture and leisure opportunities.
How do urban mobility initiatives contribute to healthy and liveable cities?
Here, in Australia, The Australian Urban Observatory's digital planning platform can take up to 34 liveability indicators, measure and map these and eventually visualise what liveability looks like across Australian cities… It’s a really important tool to connect policy to planning so that people are able to simply understand what liveability looks like across those indicators but also importantly for them to look at the connection between policy and the outcomes for people who live in those areas.
As well as local initiatives, there is a health impact assessment tool elaborated by the World Health Organization that can be used by any country, region or city to measure the liveabliity of their urban environment. Dr. Belen Zapata-Diomedi also from RMIT University shares some insights on this tool:
How can cities do their own assessments?
We have tools available for city officials to measure the health impacts of urban mobility interventions. An example is the health economic assessment tool by the World Health Organisation, which allows users to see how population health can be improved by supporting more walking and cycling, and measures the impacts of changes in exposure to air pollution and road injuries.
Want to see what such an assessment looks like in practice? Watch the video to see the results when applied to Outer London in the UK, and check out the products on the Marketplace that offer tools to assess liveability in cities: Urban Radar, Fluctuo, Vianova and HOPU.