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Journal Article

Citation

Ribeiro AI, Hoffimann E. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018; 15(12): e15122767.

Affiliation

EPIUnit-Instituto de Saúde Pública, Universidade do Porto, 4050-600 Porto, Portugal. elainehoffimann@gmail.com.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2018, MDPI: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute)

DOI

10.3390/ijerph15122767

PMID

30563290

Abstract

The creation of walkable communities constitutes a cost-effective health promotion strategy, as walking is an accessible and free intervention for increasing physical activity and health. In this cross-sectional ecological study, we developed a walkability index for the Porto Metropolitan Area and we validated it by assessing its association with walking for transportation. Neighborhood walkability was measured using a geographic information system and resulted from the weighted sum of residential density, street connectivity, and a destination-based entropy index. The index was categorized into quintiles of increasing walkability. Among the 1,112,555 individuals living in the study area, 28.1% resided in neighborhoods in the upper quintile of walkability and 15.8% resided in the least walkable neighborhoods. Adjusted regression models revealed that individuals residing in the most walkable neighborhoods are 81% more likely to report walking for transportation, compared with those from the least walkable neighborhoods (odds ratio: 1.81; 95% confidence intervals: 1.76⁻1.87). These results suggest that community design strategies to improve walkability may promote walking behavior.


Language: en

Keywords

built environment; health promotion; physical activity; urban form; urban health; walking

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