Playing in the Streets

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  • Title: Playing in the Streets: How Re-engaging Children with the Suburban Street-Scape Can Effect Change in Overweight and Obesity Patterns in Australia
  • Author(s): Lisa Scharoun, Gregor Mews
  • Publisher: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Collection: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Series: Spaces & Flows
  • Journal Title: Spaces and Flows: An International Journal of Urban and ExtraUrban Studies
  • Keywords: Co-design, Suburban Neighbourhood, Street-scape, Play, Child Health and Wellbeing, Physical Activity, Obesity, Flow
  • Volume: 9
  • Issue: 4
  • Year: 2019
  • ISSN: 2154-8676 (Print)
  • ISSN: 2154-8684 (Online)
  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.18848/2154-8676/CGP/v09i04/63-75
  • Citation: Scharoun, Lisa , and Gregor Mews. 2019. "Playing in the Streets: How Re-engaging Children with the Suburban Street-Scape Can Effect Change in Overweight and Obesity Patterns in Australia." Spaces and Flows: An International Journal of Urban and ExtraUrban Studies 9 (4): 63-75. doi:10.18848/2154-8676/CGP/v09i04/63-75.
  • Extent: 13 pages

Abstract

The way that children access play and move around in the suburban environment in Australia has dramatically changed in the past few decades. In the category of young Australians, nearly three in every ten children and young people are now classified as overweight or obese (25% of the population). This rise is causing a significant burden on individuals, families, and communities. This article contributes with a case study to the existing body of knowledge by exploring the concept of co-design as a context specific solution that can assist in reversing the trend of sedentary lifestyles in childhood and delivers street-scapes for healthy communities. The review canvases the current issues associated with social life in suburban street-scapes, and how co-design could be a means to create new and engaging urban areas to increase the physical activity of children in Canberra, Australia. Specifically, our team looked at the possibility of re-engaging young people with their street-scapes through piloting co-design workshops that allow school children to imagine what a “healthy street” could look like and feel like.