Canadian Institue Of Planners

Shaping our Communities
Sustaining Canada's Future.

Healthy Communities

The relationship between how our communities are designed and the health status of Canadians is ever more important, as social and environmental stressors contribute to growing physical and mental health problems in Canada.

As professionals concerned with the shaping of the built, natural, and social environment, planners can contribute to and promote the conditions under which community and individual health and well-being can be improved. Planners are trained to see a community holistically, and are in a unique position to integrate diverse perspectives, collaborate with a wide variety of allied professionals and stakeholders, and bring solutions to the table that demonstrate the principles of healthy community planning.



Policy for Healthy Community Planning:

The Healthy Communities Policy defines the role that planning has in fostering vibrant environments and active lifestyles that promote and protect the health of all Canadians, increasing the social and health equity of our communities.

Read CIP’s full policy on healthy communities (context, goals, objectives, and the roles of planners and CIP) by clicking on the adjacent image.

About: This policy was led by the CIP Healthy Communities Committee and developed through a thoughtful and extensive consultation with professional planners, planning and health practitioners, academics, and other experts in the healthy community field using interviews, surveys, and focus groups.


Health and Planning in Canada

Released in 2021, the Report on Health and Planning in Canada, as well as the Planning and Community Health Practitioner's Handbook, offer insights into the shared priorities of planners and public health professionals. Supported by CIP and members, the resources are intended to spur discussion on effective approaches, successful collaboration techniques with public health, and to increase consideration and inclusion of health in a variety of planning processes.

Healthy Communities webinar

CIP webinar, Planning for Health and Well-Being, included an overview of current developments in planning for health with a particular focus on metrics and measuring healthy community outcomes. Presenters Mikael St-Pierre from the Centre d'écologie urbaine de Montréal, Dr. Sagar Shah from the American Planning Association, Keltie Craig, RPP, MCIP, and Peter Marriott, from the City of Vancouver used engaging case studies to reinforce the interrelation between health and planning.

To listen to this webinar and others previously recorded in the CPL series, please visit the CIP Learning HUB


Healthy Communities Annotated Bibliography

CIP's Healthy Communities Committee (HCC) is proud to launch a series of annotated bibliographies. These bibliographies are meant to act as a resource for planners looking for a bird's eye view of resources exploring connections between health and the built environment, as well as implications for planning. The committee encourages all members to read and share the bibliographies. 

Issue 01 - Planning for Healthy Communities - A Planner's Prescription
Issue 02 - Planning for Healthy Communities - A Planner's Prescription

CIP's Healthy Communities Practice Guide is designed to help planners promote healthier communities, and to understand how health practioners can support them in attaining that shared goal.

For futher information about CIP's work on Healthy communities, visit our Resource Library.

Integrating health in urban and territorial planning: A Sourcebook (2020)

UN-Habitat and WHO have launched a new sourcebook aimed at planners, city managers and health professionals on integrating health in urban and territorial planning. For more information click here.