Air pollution and equity impacts of the proposed Tampa Bay Next program from a Health in all Policies perspective
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Kocak, Talha; Menon, Nikhil; Gurram, Sashikanth; Bertini, Robert L.; Stuart, Amy L.
The impacts on air pollution and health equity of Tampa Bay Next, an ongoing transportation planning program in the Tampa area, were investigated in this study. Part 1 of this report describes simulations performed using a high-resolution modeling system to estimate changes in pollutant emissions, concentrations, population exposures, and exposure equity that may result from the proposed freeway changes under the program. Inequity in the distribution of exposures among racial-ethnic and income groups was also estimated. Part 2 describes the application of a Health in All Policies (HiAP) perspective to the program, through literature review, review of program documents, interviews with key informants, and evaluations using a rating matrix. Results from the simulation analyses indicate that the planned freeway expansion may slightly decrease daily NOx exposures on average, while increasing exposure densities during peak periods in some localities. Group-average exposures decreased for all population subgroups, but disparities in exposure increased for the black and the below-poverty groups. Results from the HiAP analysis suggest that health and equity have not been central considerations in program planning, and multi-sectoral collaboration has been limited, resulting in many stakeholders outside the transportation sector concerned that the program costs and benefits are unfairly distributed. Historical silos in the mode focus and funding structure of the transportation sector also appear to hamper designs and changes that could improve equity and health outcomes. Improving the equity and health impacts of this and other large-scale metropolitan transportation programs will likely require political commitment to the participation of more extensive multi-sectoral cooperative bodies, including the health sector, from the early stages of program planning, along with changes to the funding structures that allow consideration of investments in alternative modes of transportation simultaneously with roadway expansion.
traffic-related air pollution; urban design; road expansion; transportation equity; environmental inequality; Health in All Policies
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