Toole Design Group is the lead consultant to the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) on their CDC-funded effort to promote active transportation throughout Ohio. This multi-disciplinary approach is focused on 23 counties that have been identified based on health indicators and income disparities. The project involves a broad suite of efforts linking health and transportation outcomes, and includes close coordination with the Ohio Department of Transportation.
One element of this project is TDG’s statewide network of Regional Outreach Coordinators, who provide technical assistance and direct support to communities on a range of local active transportation issues. TDG’s Coordinators help host local Open House meetings, facilitate targeted round-table discussions, and strategize on how each local community can effectively “move the needle” in terms of active transportation. By giving local staff access to national experts and tailored technical assistance, the program has resulted in greater knowledge among local public health professionals about active transportation strategies and progress towards consensus locally for next steps for increasing active transportation options in targeted communities, such as complete streets policy adoption and shared use agreements.
TDG’s work with ODH has also included the development of a number of state-level resources. For example, TDG developed and presented a series of Complete Streets workshops including a “train-the-trainer” program, where a dozen local Ohio professionals were deputized to lead similar trainings throughout the state. We developed a webinar on active commuting for Human Resources professionals, a toolbox related to shared use agreements for public spaces, and recommendations related to school siting and design. TDG provides support for the statewide Active Transportation Action Plan, and organized the first-ever statewide Active Transportation Action Institute.