The link between transportation decisions and community health impacts is often overlooked. With this connection in mind, the Hillsborough MPO has joined with the Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County to highlight the value that safe, walkable streets can bring to the Town ‘N Country community.
Town ‘N Country is an area in western Hillsborough County roughly bounded by Tampa Bay to the south, the Veterans Expressway to the east, Linebaugh Ave to the north and the Hillsborough County boundary on the west. The 2010 census reports Town ‘N Country’s population to be 78,442 people, making it a larger city than Plant City or Temple Terrace if it were incorporated. Hispanic or Latino residents make up approximately 44% of the population, much higher than the rest of Hillsborough County.
|Town ‘N Country||Hillsborough County|
|Hispanic / Latino||43.8%||26.5%|
|Population under 18||22.2%||23.2%|
George Road is a north-south roadway with a trail system on either end-the Town N’ Country Greenway on the north and the Skyway Park on the south. The Town N’ Country Greenway provides connection to the Upper Tampa Bay Trail while the Skyway Park connects to the Courtney Campbell Trail. Connecting the two trail systems using George Road would provide a significant local and regional transportation connection for trail users, residents and commuters living and traveling through the corridor.
The health impact assessment of this project includes analysis of the potential changes in physical activity levels, traffic safety, access to green space, crime-related incidents, chronic disease, mental health and well-being, respiratory disease, and heat-related illness. Transportation engineering practice, combined with the analysis of determinants of health and health outcome indicators, can provide better transportation options that lead to healthier lives by improving mobility for non-drivers, lowering rates of traffic injury, and improving chronic disease and mental health outcomes all while supporting the regional and state trail system.