The Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) received a two year planning grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to collect baseline data and design a longitudinal research study that will measure the impact of environmental conditions, particularly mixed-income, mixed-use, transit oriented real estate development (“TOD”) projects, on health in nine Eastern  Massachusetts neighborhoods. The research study will track environmental conditions and health in neighborhoods targeted for investment in such TOD projects compared to environmental conditions and health in control neighborhoods with similar demographics, built environments and health outcome characteristics over a five- to ten-year period. The study tracks neighborhood changes across multiple domains to include economic, social, behavioral, environmental, and health outcome indicators. Taken together, these indicators can help predict and track neighborhood change over time, and provide important new insights about the connections between the built environment, opportunity, behavior, and health. On February 15, 2017, members of the survey teams from Fall River and New Bedford met at the Fall River YMCA to a first report of the findings of the survey that they conducted. Click here for a 12-minute video of the beginning and end of the meeting. Click here, here and here for additional project web pages. For more information, contact YMCA Project Leader Gail Hartnett Rodrigues at 508-996-9622.

(Top row) Saint Anne's Hospital Community Benefits Coordinator Tracy Ibbotson talks with Greater New Bedford United Way Vice-President of Community Impact and Operations Allison Yates-Berg and Southcoast Health Community Benefits Manager Kerry Mello as YMCA Southcoast Project Leader Gail Hartnett Rodrigues, center, talks with the Fall River surveyors and Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) Research Assistant Annika Nielsen passes out copies of the report. (Middle row) CLF Director of Research and Partnerships Vedette Gavin begins her review of the project by asking for a show of hands regarding participants' familiarity with the study. (Bottom row) Fall River Flint Neighborhood Surveyors Eric Andrade, Amy Blanchette and Katrina Benner listen to the report before Eric gives some feedback to YMCA Southcoast President and CEO James Scherer and others in the group.

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