Reconnecting America People * Places * Possibility

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Social Capital and the Built Environment: The Importance of Walkable Neighborhoods

A growing number of researchers agree that social networks and community involvement have positive health consequences. Persons who are socially engaged with others and actively involved in their communities tend to live longer and be healthier physically and mentally.

The more integrated we are with our community, the less likely we are to experience colds, heart attacks, strokes, cancer, depression, and premature death of all sorts. . . . Over the last 20 years more than a dozen large studies . . . have shown that people who are socially disconnected are between 2 and 5 times more likely to die from all causes, compared with matched individuals who have close ties with family, friends, and the community.