The following list of recommendations and solutions have been identified by MHC members to address the region’s housing challenges.
- Increase and improve transit service to existing grocery stores to people living in food deserts.
Because many communities are far from a grocery store that sells fresh and healthy food, transit providers should study different transit options for improving access to fresh food.
- Provide incentives for grocers to locate in station areas.
Funding is increasingly becoming available from a variety of sources to provide incentives for grocery stores to build in low-income neighborhoods and for convenience stores to stick healthier food options. Communities also can revise their zoning laws to permit grocery stores in places where they would fit within the existing neighborhood fabric.
- Provide access to existing park space near transit stations and encourage the preservation of green spaces near them.
Mile High Connects recommends considering the development of a regional “green necklace” of pocket parks, trails and open spaces along the FasTracks build out. This will help to promote healthy living and give people from all neighborhoods a safe place to play.
- Improve last-mile connections across the transit system so that people walk and bike more.
Mile High Connects believes it is critical to support and fund policies that encourage walking and biking to and from transit stations.
- Allow farmer’s markets and other green markets at station areas.
Farmer’s markets or other green markets can provide goods and services right at the station, and also support local businesses. Communities should study the feasibility of these types of markets near station areas.
- Obtain more localized data or conduct research studies of certain neighborhoods to better understand the health issues for neighborhoods served by transit.
There is a need for local and state public health departments to conduct additional research at a neighborhood level so that better data and mapping can be done to better understand the health challenges and opportunities faced by each community.