Healthy homes and happy neighbourhoods: incorporating health and wellbeing into housing developments and urban planning

At this panel event, we discussed how we can better integrate health and wellbeing into urban planning to create happier and healthier neighbourhoods.

There is much existing evidence on the impact of housing on health and wellbeing. From poor house ventilation contributing to higher indoor air pollution; to poorly designed neighbourhoods making it difficult for residents to be physically and socially active.  Conversely, high-quality housing developments and well-planned surrounding spaces can help promote healthier lifestyles and contribute to redressing long-standing health inequalities.

So, how can we ensure that health and wellbeing are included in all stages of neighbourhood design and urban planning? What barriers prevent health from being incorporated into built environments? And what can parliamentarians, local authorities, housing developers and urban planners do to promote the integration of health and wellbeing into urban decision making?

Our panel of experts – chaired by SMF Director James Kirkup – included Dr Caglar Koksal, contributing author of Building Utopia and Lecturer in the Department of Planning and Environmental Management at The University of Manchester. At the session, Dr Koksal presented new evidence revealing some of the biggest barriers to including health in urban decision making, and how these could be overcome.


Dr Caglar Koksal, Contributing author of Building Utopia, The University of Manchester

 Dr Sue Chadwick, Strategic Planning Advisor, Pinsent Masons

 Dr Daniel Slade, Policy and Projects Manager, Town and Country Planning Association

James Kirkup, Director, Social Market Foundation (Chair)



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