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Pierce County Residents Benefit from Healthy Communities

7 local jurisdictions receive honors for projects that promote community health.

Post Date:01/22/2019 1:23 p.m.

TACOMA, Wash.—When your community is healthy, you have a better chance to be healthy, too. Healthy communities offer:

  • Access to safe physical activity.
  • Fresh and healthy foods.
  • Clean air and water.
  • A commitment to health in policy decisions.

Seven local jurisdictions showed leadership last year to improve community health outcomes:

  • Fife
  • Lakewood
  • Metro Parks Tacoma
  • Pierce County
  • Sumner
  • Tacoma
  • University Place

Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department recognizes these jurisdictions with 2018 Healthy Community Awards. The awards ceremony is Feb. 21 at 5:30 p.m. at the Washington State Fair Events Center-Fair View Club, 110 9th Ave. SW, Puyallup. Each recipient made strides to address social, economic, and environmental factors that make people healthy.

"Good health starts where you live, learn, work, and play," said Amy Pow, principal planner. “A healthy community is vital to everyone,” she said.

The award-winning projects

The health department ranked the winning projects on public engagement, social connection, economic prosperity, and environmental stewardship. For 2018, the health department honored six platinum and one gold award winners. 

The platinum award winners:

Fife (Brookville Garden Park)—The new 15-acre park offers:

  • Open lawn spaces for families and friends to gather.
  • Walking trails
  • A jungle gym where children can have safe and healthy fun.

Lakewood (Downtown Subarea Plan)—The plan:

  • Improves conditions for bicyclists and pedestrians.
  • Creates quality public spaces.
  • Increases housing choices.
  • Provides tax exemptions for low-income housing units.
  • Addresses homelessness and encourages transitional housing with supportive services.

Pierce County (Foothills Trail—South Prairie to Buckley)—The completed trail section provides a safe place for people to:

  • Bike.
  • Walk.
  • Reduce stress.
  • Experience nature.

Sumner (Parks and Trails Plan)—The plan provides open spaces and accessible trails for residents and area employees. 

Tacoma (Livable City Year)—The project identifies policies to support community health like:

  • Greater access to healthy food.
  • Mental health services.
  • Effects of bias in the criminal justice system.
  • More trees.

University Place (Regional Growth Center Plan)—The plan will develop an activity-friendly and socially-connected downtown hub that promotes:

  • Walkability.
  • Connectivity.
  • Affordable housing.

This year’s gold award winner:

Metro Parks Tacoma (Eastside Community Center)—The center expects to attract 350,000 visitors annually, including more than 200 Boys & Girls Club children each weekday. Promotes social interaction through a shared space with:

  • Community recreation.
  • Learning.
  • Social gathering.

Learn more about healthy communities and community planning at

About Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department: Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department’s mission is to protect and improve the health of all people and places in Pierce County. As part of our mission, the Health Department tackles known and emerging health risks through policy, programs and treatment to protect public health. We are one of roughly 220 accredited health departments in the country and among six in the state to have met or exceeded the Public Health Accreditation Board’s quality standards. Learn more at

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