Using the Community Readiness Model to Examine the Built and Social Environment: A Case Study of the High Point Neighborhood, Seattle, Washington, 2000–2010
Published Date:Nov 06 2014
Source:Prev Chronic Dis. 11.
Residents of many cities lack affordable, quality housing. Economically disadvantaged neighborhoods often have high rates of poverty and crime, few institutions that enhance the quality of its residents’ lives, and unsafe environments for walking and other physical activity. Deteriorating housing contributes to asthma-related illness. We describe the redevelopment of High Point, a West Seattle neighborhood, to improve its built environment, increase neighborhood physical activity, and reduce indoor asthma triggers.
High Point is one of Seattle’s most demographically diverse neighborhoods. Prior to redevelopment, it had a distressed infrastructure, rising crime rates, and indoor environments that increased asthma-related illness in children and adolescents. High Point residents and partners developed and implemented a comprehensive redevelopment plan to create a sustainable built environment to increase outdoor physical activity and improve indoor environments.
We conducted a retrospective analysis of the High Point redevelopment, organized by the different stages of change in the Community Readiness Model. We also examined the multisector partnerships among government and community groups that contributed to the success of the High Point project.
Overall quality of life for residents improved as a result of neighborhood redevelopment. Physical activity increased, residents reported fewer days of poor physical or mental health, and social connectedness between neighbors grew. Asthma-friendly homes significantly decreased asthma-related illness among children and adolescents.
Providing affordable, quality housing to low-income families improved individual and neighborhood quality of life. Efforts to create social change and improve the health outcomes for entire populations are more effective when multiple organizations work together to improve neighborhood health.
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