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EPA Releases New Guidebook to Encourage Smarter Community Design and Healthier Living for Seniors

Release Date: 08/20/2009
Contact Information: Enesta Jones,, 202-564-7873, 202-564-4355

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released a new guidebook to help older adults access information about the importance of environmentally friendly community design and how to become involved in decisions about what is termed as “smart growth.” Smart growth covers a range of development and conservation strategies that help protect our natural environment and make our communities more attractive, economically stronger and more socially diverse.

"Growing Smarter, Living Healthier: A Guide to Smart Growth and Active Aging” addresses the basic principles of “age-friendly” neighborhoods and town designs that are healthier for people and the environment.

The guide offers suggestions and links to resources to learn more about how to remake neighborhoods to get around easier, whether someone lives in a city, suburb or small town. It also presents ideas for getting involved, providing housing options and gathering places, eating healthier and making it easier to carry out daily activities.

The guidebook also contains a self-assessment tool that allows communities to rate themselves based on how their communities are following the principles of smart growth.

To access the guidebook: