Routine Assessment of Health Impacts of Local Transportation Plans: A Case Study from the City of Los Angeles

This article uses a case study from the City of Los Angeles, California, to evaluate the health impacts of local transportation plans. The authors determined the health impacts of three future scenarios of travel behavior in order to provide specific recommendations for how to conduct health impact assessments of local transportation plans on a more routine basis. The authors used the Integrated Transportation and Health Impact Model to assess the health impacts of the Los Angeles Mobility Plan 2035. The inputs used were environmental impact report data on miles traveled by mode under alternative implementation scenarios. The Integrated Transportation and Health Impact Model links region-wide changes in travel behavior to population exposures to physical activity, air pollution, and traffic collisions and associated health outcomes and costs. Results showed that the largest impacts were on cardiovascular disease through increases in physical activity. Reductions in air pollution-related illnesses were more modest. Surprisingly, traffic injuries and deaths increased across all scenarios but were countered through targeted roadway safety enhancements accounted for outside the model. The discussion section covers land use strategies, accounting for efforts to improve roadway safety conditions, and public health implications. The authors conclude that the new California environmental regulation that establishes vehicle miles traveled (VMT) as the metric for assessing transportation impacts provides an opportunity for local jurisdictions to more easily and routinely consider health impacts as part of environmental impact reports.


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  • Accession Number: 01729573
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jan 29 2020 2:50PM