PLACE Program
3530 Wilshire Blvd, 8th Floor,
Los Angeles, CA 90010
(213) 351-7825

Data and Reports

At the County's science agency, the Department of Public Health provides data and research to inform policy, programs, and best practices in the field.

The PLACE Program's focus on the built environment includes work around traffic safety, urban forestry and extreme heat, and the social determinants of health, particularly how our neighborhoods can support positive health outcomes for all people. PLACE's data and reports are collected here.

How do pedestrians fare in motor vehicle collisions?

DPH used data from the Los Angeles County Emergency Medical Services Agency trauma database to evaluate outcomes for people hit by a car while walking. Over a two-year period, 4713 people were hit and 235 of them died – that’s two people per week (see infographic). People hit at speeds greater than 20 mph were more likely to be injured, disabled or die than people hit at speeds under 20 mph (see brief).

Direct costs of medical care for bicyclist and pedestrian victims

To place in perspective the economic losses that result from motor vehicle crashes, DPH calculated the minimum direct costs of medical care for pedestrian and bicyclist victims of motor vehicle collisions in Los Angeles County. In 2014, direct costs were $63.4 million (see brief and methods).

Parks and Public Health in Los Angeles County

The objective of this study was to assess park space per capita in relation to premature mortality from cardiovascular disease (heart disease and stroke) and diabetes, childhood obesity prevalence, community level economic hardship, and race/ethnicity in cities and unincorporated communities across Los Angeles County. Large geographic disparities in park space per capita were observed (see brief).

Vision Zero: Preventing Traffic Deaths - The Critical Role of Clinicians

Clinicians have an opportunity to support Vision Zero, a multidisciplinary effort to end traffic fatalities in LA County. This article describes concrete actions clinicians can take including: engaging patients in conversations about practicing safe transportation behaviors, sharing their first-hand experiences about victims of traffic collisions to promote culture change, advocating for local policy changes, and encouraging their patients to get involved with local advocacy efforts (see article).

Building Awareness about Equity and the Social Determinants of Health

The social determinants of health are the conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work, and age. These circumstances, such as access to high-quality education, housing, and financial resources, are the most responsible for health inequities - the unfair and avoidable differences in health status seen within and between communities. Building broad awareness and understanding of the social determinants of health and the policies that have created health inequities is an important step to move towards racial equity, social justice, and healthier communities.

In order to support this goal, the PLACE program developed two GIS Story Maps: “Hidden Health Hazards: How Our Environments Shape Us” and “Let’s Walk!” The Story Maps can be embedded and linked from any website, and should be broadly used for education to connect the dots around what determines health and overcoming barriers to walking. In addition, the PLACE program is supporting the Department of Regional Planning’s (DRP) Equitable Development Work Program through the Healthy Design Workgroup. DRP reports regularly to the Board with status updates.

Safe Routes to School Resources

The PLACE program developed “Let’s Walk to School Together! A Walking School Bus Training Manual” as a resource for adult volunteers interested in starting a Walking School Bus program at their school. A Walking School Bus is an adult-supervised group walk to and/or from school. The goal of the program is to encourage students to walk to school, and is one of many possible Safe Routes to School programs. The Training Manual outlines key phases of a Walking School Bus program’s development and provides customizable templatesthat can help kick-start the program. In addition, a flyer (English and Spanish)is available to help recruit volunteers for the program.

Safety Tips for Pedestrians, Bicyclists, and Motorists

The PLACE program compiled safety tips for people walking, adult cyclists, and children cyclists. The Automobile Association of America (AAA) has compiled safe driving resources and additional resources for older adult drivers. Healthcare providers are encouraged to discuss safe roadway behaviors and distribute these tips to their patients to build awareness of traffic safety. Since pedestrians and bicyclists are disproportionately impacted in fatal and severe injury traffic collisions, alerting patients to the importance of safe walking, bicycling, and scooting is critical. To learn more about safely using e-scooters, please visit:
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