Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Public housing project a national model for supporting health

The Mariposa redevelopment in Denver’s impoverished Lincoln Park neighborhood uses groundbreaking health metrics to create a healthier, arts-oriented, transit-friendly community.

Two Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment built environment experts provide insights about the project. 

“Their commitment to asking the hard questions and potentially making changes to their plans if they’re not seeing the metrics change, that’s what sets this apart from anything else I’ve seen in the state of Colorado,” said Jessica Osborne, one of two built environment coordinators for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

The scale of the Mariposa project makes it unique. And it targets people who need a health revolution the most.

“It’s serving a vulnerable population that has experienced a lot of disparities,” said Gretchen Armijo, the other built environment coordinator for the state health department, who also teaches classes at the University of Colorado Denver on Health Impact Assessments.

She said the growing interest in health impacts is linked to the obesity epidemic. “It has gotten our attention at a national level, at a state level, not just as a public health issue, but as an economic crisis."

To read the full story, please go to Health Policy Solutions

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