Illinois PRC - Physical Activity Policy Research Network


As a collaborating center in the CDC Physical Activity Policy Research Network Plus, the Illinois Prevention Research Center focuses on the role that zoning, land use, and smart growth policies can play in facilitating walkable communities and increasing walking and physical activity in communities. The center emphasizes collaborative research across the network that directly builds off of formative research our team has conducted to examine the impact of zoning codes on the active living orientation of communities and adult and adolescent physical activity and obesity. As part of this collaboration we also share existing resources to help facilitate this research.

As a pilot project, the research team is examining zoning, land use and smart growth policies in 10 large jurisdictions and 10 small, southern jurisdictions using a zoning audit tool and GIS and Google Street View to construct community walkability measures to determine the level of policy implementation, as well as conducting qualitative interviews with urban planners and zoning officials to understand local zoning, land use and smart growth policy development, adoption, and/or implementation processes and their experiential perceptions as to how the design and/or implementation of such policies may support and/or inhibit community walkability, physical activity, and walking behaviors, and examine variations across community health disparities and demographic factors.

Research Partner(s)

The Illinois PRC is a collaborating center in the Physical Activity Policy Research Network Plus, which includes investigators of Prevention Research Centers at these academic institutions:

Johns Hopkins University (Coordinating Center)

University of Arizona

University of Massachusetts Medical School Worcester

University of Rochester

Affiliated Center/Program

Funding Agency

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Grant No. 3U48DP005010, under the Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research Centers)


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About this grant

This competitive supplement grant (SIP14-025) to the Illinois Prevention Research Center supports the center’s participation in a CDC thematic research network of five PRCs that study the effectiveness of policies to increase physical activity. The award amount listed is an estimated projection based on the original notice of award.