View from the chamber: Reconnecting communities with neighbourhoods makes for proactive health approach

Cllr Ketan Sheth explains the benefits of low traffic neighbourhoods.

Cllr Ketan Sheth explains the benefits of low traffic neighbourhoods. - Credit: Archant

So, what are these low traffic neighbourhoods? Well, these are a group of residential streets where traffic, not local to the area, is discouraged or removed.

Brent plans to roll out these initiatives between August 2020 and February 2021, in partnership with TfL and the DfT.

I love where I live. It is rich in the elements that make for a vibrant community. There is a bus stop near my home, there are parks I visit with my two sons, and neighbours who represent a wide range of ethnicities, ages and incomes. Brent aims to create communities that better support residents’ physical, social and emotional wellbeing, and we are starting to realise that reactive healthcare is not sustainable.

We need to move to a more proactive mindset and break down the silos between planners, healthcare and governments. Then we can develop environments that improve outcomes and help alleviate the burden of treating chronic conditions at a macroeconomic level.

This involves working with our communities and stakeholders. At the individual and community levels, the more attention policymakers, planners and developers pay to these principles, the more likely it is that we will all be able to proclaim our love for our neighbourhoods.

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We know stress undermines wellness, so it is not surprising stress reduction and connecting residents with their streets is at the heart of Healthy Neighbourhoods’ initiative. We have an opportunity to de-stress Brent – let’s take that forward.

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