Design For Health

Blogs about Health and Places

As blogs have proliferated some have begun to deal with health and places. Below I list a sampling of the range of such sites, many dealing with health issues as part of a larger interest in topics such as urban development or housing. They are in alphabetical order.

City Parks Blog (http://cityparksblog.org/) is the blog of the Trust for Public Land’s Center for City Park Excellence and the City Parks Alliance. One of the interests of the center is in health: http://cityparksblog.org/2009/01/06/parks-mediate-our-urban-mental-health/
From State of the Planet blog

Healthy Cities (http://healthyurbanplanning.blogspot.com/) is the blog of Jason Corburn, a faculty member at Berkeley. It focuses on highlighting resources such as reports and statistics and has an international flavor.

Squatter City (http://squattercity.blogspot.com/) is maintained by Robert Neuwirth. Neuwirth is journalist and author of Shadow Cities, a 2006 book based on a total of two years of living in four different squatter settlements. My undergraduate students find it a compelling read. Neuwirth’s blog deals with a wide range of issues about urban settlements.

State of the Planet (http://blogs.ei.columbia.edu) is a compilation of blogs from the Earth Institute at Columbia University. It is by far the most elaborate in this list with fancy graphics, multiple contributors, and obviously represents a lot of staff time. It has a useful keyword search.

Urban Chickens (http://www.urbanchickens.net/) is an example of a blog about local food production. Entries deal with many of the practicalities of raising one’s own eggs. The proliferation of these kinds of blogs really help people who have a DIY approach. Keep an eye out for next year’s listing of urban chicken coop tours: http://www.urbanchickens.net/2010/03/urban-chicken-coop-tours-in-2010.html
Walk Score, the blog (http://blog.walkscore.com/) builds off the popularity of the walkscore tool. In the main web site an automated calculation based on destinations such as shops. As an expert on pedestrian planning I think this is oversimplified but the tool itself is fun and the blog is a mix of example results and tips about using the scoring (e.g. how to customize scores).
Other web resources about health and places are available at: http://designforhealth.net/blogs-about-health-and-places/

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