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The shape that we give our city, in turn shapes us.

The product of three years of planning, research, design and writing, Shaping the Healthy Community: The Nashville Plan explores the relationships between the built environment and public health within the context of Nashville, TN. The book analyzes Nashville using the “transect,” an urban planning model central to the New Urbanist and smart growth movements. By considering the seven “transect zones” – natural, rural, suburban, urban, downtown, centers and districts – the book provides a diagnosis of both health promoting and defeating aspects present in each.

NCDC strategies derived from the book are tailored to each transect, and focus on six built environment “factors” that impact health: neighborhood design & development, transportation, walkability & pedestrian safety, food resources, housing, and open space & parks.

Over the past decade, public health officials have established ever stronger links between the qualities of the built environment and the startling rise of largely preventable diseases. With this wealth of data, information, and tools to inform policy, development, planning and design, Shaping Healthy Communities is a catalyst to transform Nashville into the “Healthiest City in the South.”

Like The Plan of Nashville: Avenues to a Great City, this book is a collaboration of the Nashville Civic Design Center, Vanderbilt University Creative Services, and Vanderbilt University Press.

Reviews

"Nashville is already a national leader in the health care industry, but I want nothing less than for us to be a national leader in health. As a physician and a policymaker, my mantra has become 'make the healthy choice the easy choice.' Shaping the Healthy Community is about just that."

--from the Preface by Senator William H. Frist, MD

"Twenty-first-century cities are reinventing themselves, and the best and brightest want to live in lively, healthy places. Cities must tell their stories to the world, as Nashville has done, beautifully."

-- Richard J. Jackson, MD, MPH, was for nine years Director of the CDC's National Center for Environmental Health

"Nashville, the city that has shaped our popular culture and made it global, now stands to help us rethink our built environment. Though this book's focus is on one unique American city, its findings provide metropolitan cultures everywhere with a blueprint for healthy living. With their thorough research and analysis, the authors point the way to achieving the human- and Earth-centered places our century is ready to embrace."

-- Susan S. Szenasy, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief, Metropolis Magazine

Recognition

- Featured in Children's Health Crisis Documentary Film, 2012

- Presentation at National Conference in Seattle, Oct. 2013

- Featured in Local Leaders: Healthier Communities Through Design, 2012

- Presentation at Design & Health Summit in Washington DC, April 2014

- Presentation at HUD Healthy Homes Conference, May 2014

- Recipient of ULI Urban Innovation Grant, 2013-2014

- Recipient of NEA DesignWorks Grant, 2014-2015

Recent Projects

Fairgrounds Public Meetings Report

Fairgrounds Public Meetings Report

The Nashville Civic Design Center was asked by Mayor David Briley and the Fairgrounds Nashville Board of Directors, to facilitate a series of public meetings with the Fairgrounds Design Team, to get input in order to inform a more refined version of the Fairground Improvement Plan.

Franklin Pike Multi-modal Path

Franklin Pike Multi-modal Path

Oak Hill is a satellite city of Nashville, TN located less then 4 miles south of downtown Nashville along Interstate 65 between Nashville and Franklin. The main spine of Oak Hill is Franklin Pike which connects it to Brentwood and Berry Hill. The location is conveniently accessible allowing for several commuting options along I-65, Franklin Pike, etc. Oak Hill is also the gateway to Radnor Wildlife Refuge area, a major asset to the entire region attracting over 1.45 million visitors in 2017.Oak Hill Mayor, Heidi Campbell, approached the Nashville Civic Design Center with the idea of creating a multi-modal path along Franklin Pike to better connect Oak Hill with the Walk N Bike Master Plan, the future and existing greenway network by taking advantage of the right-of-way along Franklin Pike.Oak Hill is a satellite city of Nashville, TN located less then 4 miles south of downtown Nashville along Interstate 65 between Nashville and Franklin. The main spine of Oak Hill is Franklin Pike which connects it to Brentwood and Berry Hill.

The location is conveniently accessible allowing for several commuting options along I-65, Franklin Pike, etc. Oak Hill is also the gateway to Radnor Wildlife Refuge area, a major asset to the entire region attracting over 1.45 million visitors in 2017.

Oak Hill Mayor, Heidi Campbell, approached the Nashville Civic Design Center with the idea of creating a multi-modal path along Franklin Pike to better connect Oak Hill with the Walk N Bike Master Plan, the future and existing greenway network by taking advantage of the right-of-way along Franklin Pike. This connection could bridge the gap between Oak Hill residents, Radnor Lake State Park, Oak Hill is a satellite city of Nashville, TN located less then 4 miles south of downtown Nashville along Interstate 65 between Nashville and Franklin. The main spine of Oak Hill is Franklin Pike which connects it to Brentwood and Berry Hill. The location is conveniently accessible allowing for several commuting options along I-65, Franklin Pike, etc. Oak Hill is also the gateway to Radnor Wildlife Refuge area, a major asset to the entire region attracting over 1.45 million visitors in 2017.Oak Hill Mayor, Heidi Campbell, approached the Nashville Civic Design Center with the idea of creating a multi-modal path along Franklin Pike to better connect Oak Hill with the Walk N Bike Master Plan, the future and existing greenway network by taking advantage of the right-of-way along Franklin Pike.

Connecting The Dots

Connecting The Dots

In Nashville Civic Design Center's "The Nashville Plan: Shaping the Healthy Community" seven transects are identified that make up Davidson County. Each of these zones have their strengths and challenges as they strive to form a healthy, safe community. This publication of the Nashville Civic Design Center (NCDC) is aimed to make us rethink how public spaces in Davidson County can be reactivated across various scales. The report looks at five individual sites within their respective “transect zone." They are: Natural and Rural, Suburban, Center, Urban, and Downtown.

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