MACH, Crosstown, ATCO, and Lendlease First to Certify with Fitwel® Community
Center for Active Design announces four groundbreaking projects advancing healthy design and development at the neighborhood scale
January 22, 2020, New York, NY—The Center for Active Design (CfAD), operator of the Fitwel Certification System, today announces that four trailblazing projects have certified through Fitwel Community, a cutting-edge, evidence-based standard for optimizing holistic health benefits at the neighborhood scale. Four unique developments—led by MACH, Crosstown Development, ATCO Properties & Management, and Lendlease—emerged as leaders in piloting the Fitwel Community Scorecard to achieve certification. Their collective insights affirm that Fitwel Community offers a practical, cost effective, and scalable tool to support healthy neighborhoods.
Fitwel Community will be made available for widespread public use beginning January 30. “As a mission-driven organization, our goal is to foster market transformation in order to build health for all,” says Joanna Frank, President & CEO of CfAD. “Fitwel Community unites CfAD’s core expertise in healthy neighborhood design with Fitwel’s user-friendly digital tools—and responds to the market demand for health-promoting strategies tailored to larger, site-scale projects. We deeply appreciate the trust and leadership of our pilot users who partnered with us to create this impactful standard.”
Fitwel Community strategies were identified based upon findings from CfAD’s database of 5,000+ scholarly studies, and draw from distinguished, evidence-based resources devoted to improving health outcomes, including NYC’s Active Design Guidelines and CfAD’s pioneering Assembly: Civic Design Guidelines—the first publication of its kind to investigate links between public space and civic life indicators such as community trust and stewardship. Building on this foundation, Fitwel Community offers a deep understanding of how neighborhood design and operations can improve all aspects of community health, and radiate positive impacts well beyond a project’s boundary.
The first four Fitwel-certified communities represent existing projects (achieving Built certification) as well as those in design phase (achieving Design Certification), and reflect diverse geographies, demographics, and socioeconomic conditions. Collectively, these four projects will impact the well- being of over 20,000 residents and employees when fully occupied.
Quartier des lumières in Montréal, Québec, led by MACH and designed by Lemay, achieved a 3 Star Rating for its Design Certification. Lemay embraced Fitwel Community early on in the design of this 20-acre site, which is anchored by the iconic Radio-Canada tower. Quartier des lumières will elevate pedestrian use, creating a unique and lively streetscape environment where pedestrians are prioritized, and where social diversity and environmental sustainability create a foundation for a neighborhood devoted to holistic health. The project’s downtown location helps to boost the Quartier’s connections to a wide range of adjacent public amenities. “The Quartier’s core design principles naturally aligned with Fitwel strategies related to housing affordability, food equity, community resiliency, and more,” says Hugo Lafrance, Fitwel Ambassador and Sustainability Director at Lemay, Canada’s third largest architecture firm. “We couldn’t be more pleased to see it receive a 3 Star Rating, Fitwel’s highest achievement.”
Crosstown Concourse in Memphis, Tennessee has fully realized a vision to transform a long- shuttered Sears, Roebuck & Co. distribution center into a dynamic vertical urban village that embodies the elements of a thriving neighborhood. The destination’s achievement of a 3 Star Rating for its Built Certification is credited to the collaboration among Crosstown Development’s partners, including Church Health, Crosstown Arts, architects and planners at LRK and Dialog, and the community as a whole. Anchored by the arts, educational incubators, and a destination for holistic healthcare, the 1.2 million-square-foot urban site’s public interior atria and exterior greenspaces have become pivotal gathering places for the greater community. “This visionary team has reimagined an iconic local landmark into a creative commons that celebrates our diverse culture while promoting health, wellness, education, and the arts,” says Rogean Cadieux-Smith, AIA Fitwel Ambassador at LRK. “A host of community amenities coupled with robust year-round programming have contributed to the Fitwel certification, including innovative healthcare organizations, a high school, a theater, artist residency, and affordable housing, as well as community gardens, teaching kitchens, and on-site healthy food retailers.”
Camp North End in Charlotte, North Carolina, led by ATCO Properties & Management, earned a 2 Star Rating for its Design Certification by transforming the city’s largest assemblage of historic factories and warehouses into a regionally-renowned district for innovation, creativity, and community. Camp North End is honoring its historically significant setting while simultaneously modernizing it, upgrading assets to create a vibrant and safely walkable public realm, and installing artfully lit, thoughtfully designed congregation spaces—all punctuated with a full roster of day-to- night programming. “Everything we are doing at Camp North End aligns with CfAD’s mission of supporting health and ensuring equitable access to vibrant public and private spaces that support quality of life,” said Damon Hemmerdinger, co-president of ATCO Properties & Management. “It is our goal to provide Charlotte residents and visitors alike with access to economic opportunity, collaborative gathering spaces, and community-driven programming. We’re also pleased to be implementing innovative Fitwel policy approaches that will reinforce the health and vitality of our community over the long-term—ranging from a comprehensive public space maintenance strategy to walking meeting paths which increase creativity and productivity among our tenants’ employees.”
Horizon Uptown in Aurora, Colorado, led by global integrated property and infrastructure group Lendlease, earned a 2 Star Rating for its Design Certification. The project initially served as an early prototype for Fitwel Community, developed in partnership between Lendlease and CfAD. Horizon Uptown’s 503-acre mixed-use community raises the bar for master planned developments, by visibly embedding health and wellness as a project priority via enticing, walkable streetscapes, a variety of parks and community gathering spaces, and trails that offer immediate connections to natural landscapes. “Horizon Uptown emphasizes pedestrian and bicycle connectivity, access to quality open spaces, and an efficient parking strategy,” says Eleni Reed, Head of Sustainability – Americas. “We engaged our target market early in the design scheme to shape future programming offerings that will reinforce a cohesive sense of community identity.”
The Community Scorecard will be released for public use in conjunction with a new Commercial Sites Scorecard tailored to large-scale commercial developments. Sign up to be notified upon the release.