A – E

A

  • Abatement: A measure or set of measures designed to permanently eliminate lead-based paint hazards or lead-based paint. Abatement strategies include the removal of lead-based paint, enclosure, encapsulation, replacement of building components coated with lead-based paint, removal of lead-contaminated dust, and removal of lead-contaminated soil or overlaying of soil with a durable covering such as asphalt (grass and sod are considered interim control measures). Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Absorption: The passage of one substance into or through another. Source: Environmental Protection Agency
  • Abut: To be in contact with or join at the edge or border. Source: NYC Department of Planning
  • Access: The potential for or actual entry of a population into the health system. Entry is dependent upon the wants, resources, and needs that individuals bring to the care-seeking process. The ability to obtain wanted or needed services may be influenced by many factors, including travel, distance, waiting time, available financial resources, and availability of a regular source of care. (Note: this defined term refers to access in the context of access to care. The term access is also used within the instruments in other contexts, i.e., access to resources, access to technology. The use of access within such phrases carries the more traditional meaning). Source: Turnock BJ. Public Health: What It Is and How It Works. Gaithersburg, MD: Aspen Publishers, Inc.; 1997 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Access Control: A component of CPTED consisting of design features that limit access to and escape routes from potential crime targets. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Accessibility: A term that describes the usability of a product or service by people with disabilities. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Accessible: Easy to approach, enter, operate, participate in, and/or use safely and with dignity by a person with a disability (i.e., site, facility, work environment, service, or program). Source: United Cerebral Palsy
  • Accessible Design: Generally refers to buildings that meet specific requirements for accessibility. These requirements are found in state, local, model building codes, and the regulations of the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Standards A117.1-1998, and the Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines. These regulations, guidelines, and laws dictate standard dimensions and features such as door widths, clear space for wheelchair mobility, countertop heights for sinks and kitchens, audible and visual signals, grab bars, switch and outlet height, and more. Source: NATTAP
  • Accessible Pedestrian Signals (APS): Pedestrians who are blind use audible and tactile cues in independent travel. At intersections with fixed-time signal phasing and consistent traffic flow, traffic light changes will be reflected in parallel or perpendicular traffic surges. Source: U.S. Access Board
  • Accessory Building Or Structure: Any combination of materials that have a permanent location on the ground that is physically detached from, secondary and incidental to, and commonly associated with the primary structure. An accessory building is a type of accessory structure but an accessory structure is not necessarily a building. Examples on non-building accessory structures include a fence, air conditioning units, play equipment, and decorative yard ornaments. Source: City of Rockville, MD Zoning Code
  • Accessory Dwelling Unit: A smaller dwelling unit on the property of a primary house (also called an in-law or granny unit). Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Accommodations: Any changes made to the regular environment that will help a person succeed. Source: United Cerebral Palsy
  • Active Community Environments: Characteristics of communities such as proximity of facilities, street design, density of housing, availability of public transit and of pedestrian and bicycle facilities that promote physical activity. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Active Living by Design: A multifaceted program, developed by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, to incorporate routine physical activity and healthy eating into daily life. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Active Living Community: A community designed to provide opportunities for people of all ages and abilities to incorporate physical activity into their daily routines. By encouraging people to be more active, active living communities may improve health by lowering peoples risk for health conditions such as obesity, diabetes and heart disease. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Active Recreation: Physical activity that is done for recreation, enjoyment, sports, hobbies, health, or exercise during leisure time. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Active Transportation: Any form of human-powered transportation walking, cycling, using a wheelchair, in-line skating or skateboarding. Source: Public Health Agency of Canada
  • Acute: Occurring over a short time. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Acute Exposure: Contact with a substance that occurs once or for only a short time. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Adaptable Design: Adaptable design generally refers to housing or housing features that are intended for use by people with disabilities or those who are limited in mobility. Adapting a space beyond what current housing design permits enables people to create livable residences where they can live and thrive independently. Source: City of North Vancouver
  • Adaptable Housing: Adaptable housing refers to housing in which accessible features can easily be added or removed, based on the individual’s needs. Accessibility or adaptability requirements are determined by the law that governs each housing unit, and two major laws are the Fair Housing Act as Amended (FHAA) and Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act. The essential difference between these two classes of housing is that the FHAA requires adaptability while Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act requires full accessibility. Source: New York State Office for the Aging
  • Adaptive Behavior: The ability to adjust to new environments, tasks, objects, and people, and to apply new skills to those new situations. Source: United Cerebral Palsy
  • Adaptive Equipment: Equipment offering special support which is adapted to a person’s special needs (corner chair, prone board, etc.). Source: United Cerebral Palsy
  • Adaptive Response: Behaviors that take place when environmental press and competence are in balance, resulting in positive well-being. Source: Glaas & Balfour
  • Adaptive Reuse: Adapting buildings for new uses while retaining their historic features. 2) The conversion of obsolescent or historic buildings from their original or most recent use to a new use. For example, the conversion of former hospital or school buildings to residential use, or the conversion of an historic single-family home to office use. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Additive Effect: A biologic response to exposure to multiple substances that equals the sum of responses of all the individual substances added together. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Adverse Health Effect: A change in body function or cell structure that might lead to disease or health problems. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Aerobic: Requiring oxygen. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Affordability: The generally accepted definition of affordability is for a household to pay no more than 30 percent of its annual income on housing. Families who pay more than 30 percent of their income for housing are considered cost burdened and may have difficulty affording necessities such as food, clothing, transportation and medical care. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Affordable Housing: Housing that has a sale price or rental amount that is within the means of a household that may occupy middle-, moderate-, or low-income housing Source: A Planners Dictionary, ed. by M. Davidson & F. Dolnick. PAS Guide 521/522
  • Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR): ATSDR is directed by congressional mandate to perform specific functions concerning the effect on public health of hazardous substances in the environment. These functions include public health assessments of waste sites, health consultations concerning specific hazardous substances, health surveillance and registries, response to emergency releases of hazardous substances, applied research in support of public health assessments, information development and dissemination, and education and training concerning hazardous substances. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Agent: A factor (e.g., a microorganism or chemical substance) or form of energy whose presence, excessive presence, or in the case of deficiency diseases, relative absence is essential for the occurrence of a disease or other adverse health outcome. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Aging In Place: Individuals able to remain in their community as they grow older, living as independently as possible, using products and services to enable them to stay in their communities as their needs change. Source: Government of Alberta
  • Agricultural Urbanism: An approach to integrating growth and development with preserving agricultural resources and enhancing elements of the food system. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Agronomy: The application of soil and plant sciences to crop production that incorporates the wise use of natural resources and conservation practices to produce food, feed, fuel, fiber, and pharmaceutical crops while maintaining and improving the environment. Source: American Society of Agronomy
  • Air Cleaning: Indoor-air quality-control strategy to remove various airborne particulates and/or gases from the air. Most common methods are particulate filtration, electrostatic precipitation, and gas sorption. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Air Exchange Rate: The rate at which outside air replaces indoor air in a space. Expressed in one of two ways: the number of changes of outside air per unit of time air changes per hour (ACH); or the rate at which a volume of outside air enters per unit of time – cubic feet per minute (cfm). Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Air Pollutant: Any substance in air that could, in high enough concentration, harm man, other animals, vegetation, or material. Pollutants may include almost any natural or artificial composition of airborne matter capable of being airborne. They may be in the form of solid particles, liquid droplets, gases, or in combination thereof. Generally, they fall into two main groups: (1) those emitted directly from identifiable sources and (2) those produced in the air by interaction between two or more primary pollutants, or by reaction with normal atmospheric constituents, with or without photoactivation. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Air Quality Conformity: The link between air quality planning and transportation planning. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Air Rights: Air rights, as usually defined, comprise the rights vested in the ownership of all the property at and above a certain horizontal plane as well as caisson and column lots essential to contain the structural supports of the air rights improvement. This means in effect a horizontal division of real property, with the parts under separate ownership and involving an allocation of responsibilities and rights. The utilization of air rights consists of construction \in space\, above an existing surface use. Source: American Planning Association
  • Air Toxics: Air pollutants known or suspected to cause cancer, birth defects, or other health problems. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Alteration: A change to a building or facility that affects or could affect the usability of the building or facility or portion thereof. Alterations include, but are not limited to, remodeling, renovation, rehabilitation, reconstruction, historic restoration, resurfacing of circulation paths or vehicular ways, changes or rearrangement of the structural parts or elements, and changes or rearrangement in the plan configuration of walls and full-height partitions. Normal maintenance, reroofing, painting or wallpapering, or changes to mechanical and electrical systems are not alterations unless they affect the usability of the building or facility. Source: United States Access Board
  • Alternative Fuels: The Energy Policy Act of 1992 defines alternative fuels as methanol, denatured ethanol, and other alcohol; mixtures containing 85 percent or more (but not less than 70 percent as determined by the Secretary of Energy by rule to provide for requirements relating to cold start, safety, or vehicle functions) by volume of methanol, denatured ethanol, and other alcohols with gasoline or other fuels. Includes compressed natural gas, liquid petroleum gas, hydrogen, coal-derived liquid fuels, fuels other than alcohols derived from biological materials, electricity, or any other fuel the Secretary of Energy determines by rule is substantially not petroleum and would yield substantial energy security and environmental benefits. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Ambient Air: Any unconfined portion of the atmosphere: open air, surrounding air. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Ambulatory: Able to get from one place to another independently (even if using assistive devices such as manual wheelchairs, canes or walkers). Source: Delaware Healthcare Association
  • American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials (AASHTO): A nonprofit, nonpartisan association representing highway and transportation departments in the 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. It represents all five transportation modes: air, highways, public transportation, rail and water. Its primary goal is to foster the development, operation and maintenance of an integrated national transportation system. (AASHTO Website) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP): The American Planning Association’s professional institute that provides recognized leadership nationwide in the certification of professional planners, ethics, professional development, planning education, and the standards of planning practice. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • American National Standard Institute (ANSI): ANSI is a U.S.-based non-profit organization that works to develop and promote voluntary consensus standards and conformity assessment systems. Source: American National Standards Institute
  • American Planning Association (APA): A nonprofit public interest and research organization committed to urban, suburban, regional, and rural planning. APA and its professional institute, the American Institute of Certified Planners, advance the art and science of planning to meet the needs of people and society. (APA Website) Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • American Public Transportation Association (APTA): Acting as a leading force in advancing public transportation, APTA serves and leads its diverse membership through advocacy, innovation, and information sharing to strengthen and expand public transportation (APTA Website). Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA): ASLA is the national professional association for landscape architects, representing 17,000 members in 48 professional chapters and 68 student chapters. The Society’s mission is to lead, to educate, and to participate in the careful stewardship, wise planning, and artful design of our cultural and natural environments. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): The ADA recognizes and protects the civil rights of people with disabilities and is modeled after earlier landmark laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race and gender. The ADA covers a wide range of disability, from physical conditions affecting mobility, stamina, sight, hearing, and speech to conditions such as emotional illness and learning disorders. The ADA addresses access to the workplace (title I), State and local government services (title II), and places of public accommodation and commercial facilities (title III). The ADA Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG) serve as the basis of standards issued by the departments of Justice (DOJ) and Transportation (DOT) to enforce the law. The building guidelines cover places of public accommodation, commercial facilities, and State and local government facilities. The vehicle guidelines address buses, vans, a variety of rail vehicles, trams, and other modes of public transportation. Source: United States Access Board
  • Amtrak: Operated by the National Railroad Passenger Corporation, this rail system was created by the Rail Passenger Service Act of 1970 (Public Law 91-518, 84 Stat. 1327) and given the responsibility for the operation of intercity, as distinct from suburban, passenger trains between points designated by the Secretary of Transportation. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Anaerobic: Requiring the absence of oxygen. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Analysis of Alternatives: Understanding how the transportation system and its components work such as information on the costs, benefits and impacts of potential chances to the system. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Antagonistic Effect: A biologic response to exposure to multiple substances that is less than would be expected if the known effects of the individual substances were added together. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Antimicrobial: A general term for the drugs, chemicals, or other substances that either kill or slow the growth of microbes. Among the antimicrobial agents in use today are antibacterial drugs (which kill bacteria), antiviral agents (which kill viruses), antifungal agents (which kill fungi), and antiparisitic drugs (which kill parasites). Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Aquifer: An underground geological formation, or group of formations, containing water. Are sources of groundwater for wells and springs. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Arbovirus: Any of a group of viruses that are transmitted between hosts by mosquitoes, ticks, and other arthropods. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Architecture: The art and science of designing buildings. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Architectural And Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (ATBCB): The Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board [ATBCB] is a federal agency of the U.S. government. ATBCB was established by Congress in 1973 to provide facilities and accessibility for people disabilities. The ATBCB also functions as a coordinating body among federal agencies. Source: U.S. Federal Register
  • Area Source: Small stationary and non-transportation pollution sources that are too small and/or numerous to be included as point sources but may collectively contribute significantly to air pollution (e.g., dry cleaners). Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Arterial: Class of roads serving major traffic movements (high-speed, high volume) for travel between major points, used primarily for through traffic. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Arterial Highway: A major highway used primarily for through traffic. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Arterial Street: A class of street serving major traffic movements (high-speed, high volume) for travel between major points. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Assisted Living: A living arrangement in which people with special needs, especially older people with disabilities, reside in a facility that provides help with everyday tasks such as bathing, dressing, and taking medication. Generally, these are state-licensed programs whose exact definition and coverage will vary from state to state. 2) Assisted living facilities are designed for frail elderly residents who need assistance with activities of daily living. Frail elderly person means an elderly person who is unable to perform at least three activities of daily living. Assisted living facilities are comparable to the independent living units generally designated as part of a board and care home. An assisted living facility unit accommodation may include its own kitchen, bathroom, and sleeping area or bedroom. Source: Assisted Living Facilities
  • Assistive Devices: (see also Assistive Technology) Any product, instrument, equipment or technical system adapted or specially designed for improving the functioning of a disabled person. May include products and technology for mobility (eg crutches, canes, static and dynamic splints and wheelchairs), for communication (eg largeprint books), for self-care (eg long handled reachers, bathing aids), for employment and education (eg computer software systems), for culture, recreation and sport (eg specialised wheelchairs). Assistive devices are classified in the ISO9999. Source: World Confederation for Physical Therapy
  • Assistive Technology: Devices and services as any item, piece of equipment, or product system – whether acquired commercially off-the-shelf, modified or customized – used to increase, maintain or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities. Source: National Center for Learning Disabilities
  • Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (AMPO): AMPO is a nonprofit, membership organization established in 1994 to serve the needs and interests of “metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs)” nationwide. AMPO offers its member MPOs technical assistance and training, conferences and workshops, frequent print and electronic communications, research, a forum for transportation policy development and coalition building, and a variety of other services. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Attainment Area: An area considered to have air quality that meets or exceeds the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) health standards used in the Clean Air Act. Nonattainment areas are areas considered not to have met these standards for designated pollutants. An area may be an attainment area for one pollutant and a nonattainment area for others. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Attention Restoration: Return of attention, and reduction of distraction, irritability, and impatience; thought to be promoted by contact with nature. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Attributable Proportion: A measure of the public health impact of a causative factor; proportion of a disease in a group that is exposed to a particular factor which can be attributed to their exposure to that factor. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Attribute: A risk factor that is an intrinsic characteristic of the individual person, animal, plant, or other type of organism under study (e.g., genetic susceptibility, age, sex, breed, weight). Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Auto Inspection And Maintenance (IM): Programs require the testing of motor vehicles in parts of the country with unhealthy air and the repair of those that do not meet standards. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Automatic Vehicle Identification (AVI): A technology system using transponders on vehicles and outside sensors to determine if vehicles on toll lanes are carrying a valid transponder and what the vehicles classification is (truck vs. passenger car, SOV vs. HOV). This system also processes the appropriate toll transaction based on the information. Source: Colorado Department of Transportation
  • Automobile: A privately owned and/or operated licensed motorized vehicle including cars, jeeps and station wagons. Leased and rented cars are included if they are privately operated and not used for picking up passengers in return for fare. (FHWA3). Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Average Annual Daily Traffic (AADT): The total volume of traffic on a highway segment for one year, divided by the number of days in the year. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Average Annual Daily Truck Traffic (AADTT): The total volume of truck traffic on a highway segment for one year, divided by the number of days in the year. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Average Passenger Trip Length (Bus/Rail): Calculated by dividing revenue passenger-miles by the number of revenue passengers. Source: Federal Highway Administration

B

  • Background Level: Two types of background levels may exist for chemical substances: (a) Naturally occurring levels: Ambient concentrations of substances present in the environment, without human influence; (b) Anthropogenic levels: Concentrations of substances present in the environment due to human-made, non-site sources (e.g., automobiles, industries). Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Barrier-Free Design: An approach to design that aims for buildings, transportation systems, and outdoor environments that people with disabilities can access and use independently and safely. Source: National Service Inclusion Project
  • Barriers: Obstacles that prevent people with disabilities from fully participating in society, including: attitudinal barriers (attitudes, fears and assumptions that prevent people with and without disabilities from meaningfully interacting with one another), and physical barriers (physical obstacles that hinder people with physical disabilities from gaining access). Source: National Service and Inclusion Project
  • Base Plan: In landscape architecture, an essential sheet showing site boundaries and significant site features, used as a basis for subsequent plan development. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS): The Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) is the worlds largest, on-going telephone health survey system, tracking health conditions and risk behaviors in the United States yearly since 1984. Currently, data are collected monthly in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Guam. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Best Practice: A program, policy, activity, or strategy that has evidence of impact in multiple settings, is based on objective data, has been successfully replicated, and has research validated or field tested (in contract, a promising practice has supportive data showing positive outcomes in one situation but has insufficient research or replication to be recommended for wide spread use). Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Bicycle: A vehicle having two tandem wheels, propelled solely by human power, upon which any person or persons may ride. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Bicycle Facilities: 1) general term denoting improvements and provisions to accommodate or encourage bicycling, including parking facilities, maps, all bikeways, and shared roadways not specifically designated for bicycle use; 2) Shower(s) and changing room(s) provided in commercial and public buildings. Source: A Planners Dictionary, ed. by M. Davidson & F. Dolnick. PAS Guide 521/522
  • Bicycle Friendly: Possessing urban design factors that help make an area that caters to the needs of bicyclists. Factors include: public facilities such as bicycle racks on streets or by public buildings; Regulations that allow riders to take bicycles on board buses, trains, etc.; accessibility such as the position of bicycle paths relative to roads, quality of the terrain, presence of curb cuts, etc.; safety features such as lighting, security measures, and protection from on-road vehicles, and; aesthetics of bicycle paths and their surrounding areas. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Bikeway: 1) Any road, path, or way which in some manner is specifically designated as being open to bicycle travel, regardless of whether such facilities are designated for the exclusive use of bicycles or are to be shared with other transportation modes. (23CFR217) 2) A facility designed to accommodate bicycle travel for recreational or commuting purposes. Bikeways are not necessarily separated facilities; they may be designed and operated to be shared with other travel modes. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Biologic Indicators Of Exposure Study: A study that uses (a) biomedical testing or (b) the measurement of a substance [an analyte], its metabolite, or another marker of exposure in human body fluids or tissues to confirm human exposure to a hazardous substance (also see exposure investigation). Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Biologic Monitoring: Measuring hazardous substances in biologic materials (such as blood, hair, urine, or breath) to determine whether exposure has occurred. A blood test for lead is an example of biologic monitoring. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Biologic Uptake: The transfer of substances from the environment to plants, animals, and humans. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Biological Contaminants: Living organisms or derivates (e.g. viruses, bacteria, fungi, and mammal and bird antigens) that can cause harmful health effects when inhaled, swallowed, or otherwise taken into the body. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Biophilia: The inherent tendency of humans to affiliate with nature. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Biophilic Design: A design strategy that fosters the beneficial contact between people and nature in modern buildings and landscapes. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Biopsychosocial Model of Disease: The modern view that many factors interact to produce disease. Source: U.S. Public Health Service. Office of the Surgeon General
  • Biota: Plants and animals in an environment. Some of these plants and animals might be sources of food, clothing, or medicines for people. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC): Is measured as a percentage by weight of alcohol in the blood (grams/deciliter). A positive BAC level (0.01 g/dl and higher) indicates that alcohol was consumed by the person tested. A BAC level of 0.10 g/dl or more indicates that the person was intoxicated. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Body Burden: The total amount of a substance in the body. Some substances build up in the body because they are stored in fat or bone or because they leave the body very slowly. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Body Mass Index (BMI): A measure of body weight relative to height. BMI is a measure that is often used to determine if a person is at a healthy weight, overweight, or obese, and whether a person’s health is at risk due to his or her weight. To figure out BMI, use the following formula: BMI = weight (lb) / [height (in)]2 x 703. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Bonding Social Capital: Ties among members of a group who are similar to one another with respect to social class, race or ethnicity, religious affiliation, and other axes of social identity. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Bridging Social Capital: Links among members of a community who are dissimilar to one another with respect to social identity. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Breathing Zone: 1) The breathing zone is the region within an occupied space between 3 and 6 feet above the floor and more than 2 feet from walls or fixed air-conditioning equipment. (AHSRAE 62.12007) 2) The area of a room in which occupants breathe as they stand, sit, or lie down. Source: BuildingGreen, Inc., U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Brown Agenda: A political and social movement interested in reducing the human impact of adverse environmental conditions (cf. green agenda). Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Brownfield: Abandoned, idled, or under used industrial and commercial facilities/sites where expansion or redevelopment is complicated by real or perceived environmental contamination. They can be in urban, suburban, or rural areas. EPA’s Brownfields initiative helps communities mitigate potential health risks and restore the economic viability of such areas or properties. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Buffer/Buffer Zone: 1) a strip of land, fence, or border of trees, etc., between one land use and another, which may or may not have trees and shrubs planted for screening purposes, designed to set apart one use area from another. An appropriate buffer may vary depending on uses, districts, size, etc.; 2) districts established at or adjoining commercial-residential district boundaries to mitigate potential frictions between uses or characteristics of use. Source: A Planners Dictionary, ed. by M. Davidson & F. Dolnick. PAS Guide 521/522
  • Building (Construction) Permit: A permit issued by a local government agency that allows the construction or renovation of a home or other structure. Source: HousingPolicy.org
  • Building Code: Regulations established by a recognized government agency describing design, building procedures and construction details for new homes or homes undergoing rehabilitation. Local building codes are often based on a national model code known as the International Building Code, or one of its predecessors. Source: Center for Housing Policy
  • Building Envelope: Elements of the building, including all external building materials, windows, and walls, that enclose the internal space. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Building-Related Illness: A diagnosable illness whose symptoms can be identified and whose cause can be directly attributed to airborne building pollutants (e.g., Legionnaire’s disease, hypersensitivity pneumonitis). Also: A discrete, identifiable disease or illness that can be traced to a specific pollutant or source within a building. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Built Environment: The built environment includes our homes, schools, workplaces, parks/recreation areas, business areas and roads. It extends overhead in the form of electric transmission lines, underground in the form of waste disposal sites and subway trains, and across the country in the form of highways. The built environment encompasses all buildings, spaces and products that are created or modified by people. It impacts indoor and outdoor physical environments (e.g., climatic conditions and indoor/outdoor air quality), as well as social environments (e.g., civic participation, community capacity and investment) and subsequently our health and quality of life. Source: British Colombia Ministry of Health
  • Bulk Container: Any metal garbage, rubbish, or refuse container having a capacity of 2 cubic yards or greater and which is equipped with fittings for hydraulic or mechanical emptying, unloading, or removal. Source: Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Bureau of Land Management (BLM): The U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is responsible for carrying out a variety of programs for the management and conservation of resources on 256 million surface acres, as well as 700 million acres of subsurface mineral estate. The BLM manages multiple resources and uses, including energy and minerals, timber, forage, recreation, wild horse and burro herds, fish and wildlife habitat, wilderness areas and archaeological, paleontological and historical sites. Source: Bureau of Land Management
  • Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS): The Bureau was organized pursuant to section 6006 of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) of 1991 (49 U.S.C. 111), and was formally established by the Secretary of Transportation on December 16, 1992. BTS has an intermodal transportation focus whose missions are to compile, analyze and make accessible information on the Nation’s transportation systems; to collect information on intermodal transportation and other areas; and to enhance the quality and effectiveness of DOT’s statistical programs through research, the development of guidelines, and the promotion of improvements in data acquisition and use. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Bus: Large motor vehicle used to carry more than 10 passengers, including school buses, intercity buses, and transit buses. Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Bus Lane: 1) A street or highway lane intended primarily for buses, either all day or during specified periods, but sometimes also used by carpools meeting requirements set out in traffic laws. 2) A lane reserved for bus use only. Sometimes also known as a “diamond lane.” Source: Federal Highway Administration

C

  • CADD: Acronym For “Computer Aided Design And Drafting”
  • Cancer: Any one of a group of diseases that occur when cells in the body become abnormal and grow or multiply out of control. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Cancer Risk: A theoretical risk for getting cancer if exposed to a substance every day for 70 years (a lifetime exposure). The true risk might be lower. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Capacity: A transportation facility’s ability to accommodate a moving stream of people or vehicles in a given time period. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Carbon-Neutral: A feature of buildings or communities that entails producing zero net carbon emissions. Carbon emissions are minimized through energy conservation and the use of renewable energy sources, and measured amounts of carbon released are balanced by carbon sequestration or offsets. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Carbon Sequestration: The process through which agricultural and forestry practices remove carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere. The term sinks is also used to describe agricultural and forestry lands that absorb CO2, the most important global warming gas emitted by human activities. Agricultural and forestry practices can also release CO2 and other greenhouse gases to the atmosphere. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Carcinogen: A substance that causes cancer. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Carpool: An arrangement where two or more people share the use and cost of privately owned automobiles in traveling to and from pre-arranged destinations together. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Carrier: A person or animal that harbors the infectious agent for a disease and can transmit it to others, but does not demonstrate signs of the disease. A carrier can be asymptomatic (never indicate signs of the disease) or can display signs of the disease only during the incubation period, convalescence, or postconvalescence. The period of being a carrier can be short (a transient carrier) or long (a chronic carrier). Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • CAS Registry Number: A unique numerical identifier assigned by the \Chemical Abstracts Service\ to every chemical described in the open scientific literature (currently including those described from at least 1957 through the present) and including elements, isotopes, organic and inorganic compounds, organometallics, metals, alloys, coordination compounds, minerals, and salts; as well as standard mixtures, compounds, polymers; biological sequences including proteins & nucleic acids; nuclear particles, and nonstructurable materials (aka ‘UVCB’s- i.e., materials of Unknown, Variable Composition, or Biological origin). They are also referred to as CAS RNs, CAS Numbers, etc. Source: Chemical Abstracts Service
  • Case: A countable instance in the population or study group of a particular disease, health disorder, or condition under investigation. Sometimes, an individual with the particular disease. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Case Definition: Set of uniformly applied criteria for determining whether a person should be identified as having a particular disease, injury, or other health condition. In epidemiology, particularly for an outbreak investigation, a case definition specifies clinical criteria and details of time, place, and person. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Case-control Study: A study that compares people with a certain condition to people free of that condition in order to assess whether certain exposures are associated with the condition. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Case Study: A medical or epidemiologic evaluation of one person or a small group of people to gather information about specific health conditions and past exposures. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Case, Index: The first case or instance of a patient coming to the attention of health authorities. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Case, Source: The case or instance of a patient responsible for transmitting infection to others; the instance of a patient who gives rise to an outbreak or epidemic. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Case-Fatality Rate: (Also Called Case-Fatality Ratio) The proportion of persons with a particular condition (e.g., patients) who die from that condition. The denominator is the number of persons with the condition; the numerator is the number of cause-specific deaths among those persons. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Case-Patient: In a case-control study, a person who has the disease, injury, or other health condition that meets the case definition. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Cause Of Disease: A factor (e.g., characteristic, behavior, or event) that directly influences the occurrence of a disease. Reducing such a factor among a population should reduce occurrence of the disease. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Cause, Component: A factor that contributes to a sufficient cause. Source: Boston University School of Public Health
  • Cause, Necessary: A factor that must be present for a disease or other health problem to occur. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Cause, Sufficient: A factor or collection of factors whose presence is always followed by the occurrence of a particular health problem. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • CDBG Funds: Means Community Development Block Grant funds, including funds received in the form of grants under subpart D, F, or 570.405 of this part, funds awarded under section 108(q) of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, loans guaranteed under subpart M of this part, urban renewal surplus grant funds, and program income as defined in 570.500(a). Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Ceiling Plenum: Space below the flooring and above the suspended ceiling that accommodates the mechanical and electrical equipment and that is used as part of the air distribution system. The space is kept under negative pressure. Source: Environment Database
  • Center For Independent Living (CILS): A community based, consumer controlled, not-for-profit center governed by a board of directors of whom at least 51% are people with disabilities. Services provided include: peer counseling, information and referral, independent living skills training, and advocacy. Source: National Service Inclusion Project
  • Central Heating System: A single system supplying heat to one or more dwelling unit(s) or more than one rooming unit. Source: Hartford, Wisconsin Municipal Code
  • Certified Capacity: The capability of a pipeline project to move gas volumes on a given day, based on a specific set of flowing parameters (operating pressures, temperature, efficiency, and fluid properties) for the pipeline system as stated in the dockets filed (and subsequently certified) in the application for the Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Generally, the certificated capacity represents a level of service that can be maintained over an extended period of time and may not represent the maximum throughput capability of the system on any given day. (DOE1) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • CFM: Cubic Feet Per Minute.
  • Chain of Infection: The progression of an infectious agent that leaves its reservoir or host through a portal of exit, is conveyed by a mode of transmission, and then enters through an appropriate portal of entry to infect a susceptible host. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Charrette: An intensive, multi-disciplinary design workshop that facilitates open discussion among stakeholders of a project. Source: Charette Center
  • Chicanes: Chicanes are barriers placed in the street that require drivers to slow down and drive around them. The barriers may take the form of landscaping, street furniture, parking bays, curb extensions, or other devices. Source: Institute of Transportation Engineers
  • Chimney: A vertical shaft, usually of reinforced concrete, or other approved noncombustible, heat-resisting material enclosing one or more flues, for the purpose of removing products of combustion from solid, liquid, or gaseous fuel. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Chronic: Occurring over a long time. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Chronic Disease: A disease that has one or more of the following characteristics: it is permanent, leaves residual disability, is caused by a nonreversible pathological alteration, requires special training of the patient for rehabilitation, or may be expected to require a long period of supervision, observation or care. Source: Public Health Accreditation Board
  • Chronic Exposure: Contact with a substance that occurs over a long time. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • City Beautiful Movement: Popular in the late 19th century and extending into the early 20th century, a City Beautiful Movement was a social project with the goal of improving the appearance and functionality of urban areas. Parks, gardens, and other public spaces were designed and added along with better planning practices to ensure the beautification of an area. Source: Landscape Design Advisor
  • City Planning: 1) furthering the welfare of people and their communities by creating convenient, equitable, healthful, efficient, and attractive environments for present and future generations. 2) The decision-making process in which goals and objectives are established, existing resources and conditions analyzed, strategies developed, and controls enacted to achieve the goals and objectives as they relate to cities and communities. Source: A Planners Dictionary, ed. by M. Davidson & F. Dolnick. PAS Guide 521/522
  • Civil Engineering: The field of engineering focused on the design, construction, and maintenance of built environment elements such as bridges, roads, canals, and dams. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Class 1 Road: Hard surface highways including Interstate and U.S. numbered highways (including alternates), primary State routes, and all controlled access highways. (DOI3) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Class 2 Road: Hard surface highways including secondary State routes, primary county routes, and other highways that connect principal cities and towns, and link these places with the primary highway system. (DOI3) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Class 3 Road: Hard surface roads not included in a higher class and improved, loose surface roads passable in all kinds of weather. These roads are adjuncts to the primary and secondary highway systems. Also included are important private roads such as main logging or industrial roads which serve as connecting links to the regular road network. (DOI3) Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Class 4 Road: Unimproved roads which are generally passable only in fair weather and used mostly for local traffic. Also included are driveways, regardless of construction. (DOI3) Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Class 5 Road: Unimproved roads passable only with 4 wheel drive vehicles. (DOI3) Source: Federal Highway Administration
  • Climate Change: The term ‘climate change’ is sometimes used to refer to all forms of climatic inconsistency, but because the Earth’s climate is never static, the term is more properly used to imply a significant change from one climatic condition to another. In some cases, ‘climate change’ has been used synonymously with the term, ‘global warming’; scientists however, tend to use the term in the wider sense to also include natural changes in climate. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Cluster: An aggregation of cases of a disease or other health-related condition, particularly cancer and birth defects, which are closely grouped in time and place. The number of cases may or may not exceed the expected number. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Cluster Development: 1) The grouping of the structures in a housing development more tightly together and using the open land thus saved for common greens and squares.2) Residential development in which the subdivision and zoning regulations apply to the project as a whole rather than to its individual lots (as in most tract housing). Source: Wildland Planning Glossary
  • Cluster Investigation: A review of an unusual number, real or perceived, of health events (for example, reports of cancer) grouped together in time and location. Cluster investigations are designed to confirm case reports; determine whether they represent an unusual disease occurrence; and, if possible, explore possible causes and contributing environmental factors. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • CO: Carbon Monoxide
  • CO2: Carbon Dioxide
  • Cohort: A well-defined group of people who have had a common experience or exposure, who are then followed up for the incidence of new diseases or events, as in a cohort or prospective study. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Cohort Study: A type of epidemiological study in which a well-defined group of persons who have had a common experience or exposure are followed to determine the incidence of new diseases or health events. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Collective Efficacy: The capability of a group to intervene on behalf of the common good
  • Collector: In rural areas, routes that serve intra-county rather than statewide travel. In urban areas, streets that provide direct access to neighborhoods and arterials. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO): A single sewer pipe that collects both sewage and storm water that overflows and discharges into water bodies; used extensively in older cities and now being replaced by separate systems. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Commissioning: Start-up of a building that includes testing and adjusting HVAC, electrical, plumbing, and other systems to assure proper functioning and adherence to design criteria. Commissioning also includes the instruction of building representatives in the use of the building systems. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Community: A group of people who share some or all of the following: geographic boundaries; a sense of membership; culture and language; common norms, interests, or values; and common health risks or conditions. Members of communities typically experience the shared reality of living or working in the same location or environment and so are in a position to influence and be influenced by the social, economic, and physical risk factors in that environment. Communities consist of individuals and families, as well as the various organizations and associations that make up a community’s civil society: nonprofit, nongovernmental, voluntary, or social entities, including ethnic and cultural groups; advocacy organizations; and the faith community. Source: The Future of the Public’s Health in the 21st Century
  • Community and Individual Investment: An initiative by HUD to develop community-oriented finance institutions known as Community and Individual Investment Corporations (CIICs). These entities will be owned by the residents of selected Empowerment Zones (EZs), Enterprise Communities (ECs) and other eligible communities. The goal of the CIIC is to provide capital access to inner city residents who join with the private sector and government in investing in their community. The CIIC’s role will vary from community to community. The CIIC might make direct loans as a retail lender or it will function as a wholesale lender by carrying out its financing activities through existing institutions. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Community Assistance Panel (CAP): A group of people from a community and from health and environmental agencies who work with ATSDR to resolve issues and problems related to hazardous substances in the community. CAP members work with ATSDR to gather and review community health concerns, provide information on how people might have been or might now be exposed to hazardous substances, and inform ATSDR on ways to involve the community in its activities. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Community Character: Community character is the image of a community or area as defined by such factors as its built environment, natural features and open space elements, type of housing, architectural style, infrastructure, and type/quality of public facilities and services. Source: The Joslyn Institute for Sustainable Communities
  • Community Cohesion: A society in which there is a common vision and sense of belonging by all communities; a society in which the diversity of people’s backgrounds and circumstances is appreciated and valued; a society in which similar life opportunities are available to all; and a society in which strong and positive relationships exist and continue to be developed in the workplace, in schools and the wider community. Source: The Excellence Gateway Treasury
  • Community Design: The process of giving form, in terms of both function and aesthetic beauty, to selected urban area sort of whole cities. It is concerned with the location, mass, and design of various urban components and combines elements of urban planning, architecture, and landscape architecture. Source: The Joslyn Institute for Sustainable Communities
  • Community Development Block Grant: A Federal program created under the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974. The Community Development Block Grant program (often known as CDBG) provides annual grants on a formula basis to states and larger cities and urban counties. The funds are to be used for a wide range of community development activities directed toward neighborhood revitalization, economic development, affordable housing and improved community facilities and services. Source: HousingPolicy.org
  • Community Development Block Grant (Insular Areas): The Insular Areas CDBG program provides grants to four designated insular areas: American Samoa; Guam; Northern Mariana Islands; and the Virgin Islands. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Community Development Block Grant (State Administered): Non-entitlement areas that include those units of general local government which do not receive CDBG funds directly from HUD as part of the entitlement program (Entitlement Cities and Urban Counties). Non-entitlement areas are cities with populations of less than 50,000 (except cities that are designated principal cities of Metropolitan Statistical Areas), and counties with populations of less than 200,000. The State CDBG program has replaced the Small Cities program in States that have elected to participate. Currently, 49 States and Puerto Rico participate in the program. HUD continues to administer the program for the non-entitled counties in the State of Hawaii because the State has permanently elected not to participate in the State CDBG Program. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Community Development Block Grant Program (CDBG): A Federal program created under the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974. This program provides annual grants on a formula basis to states and larger cities and urban counties. The funds are to be used for a wide range of community development activities directed toward neighborhood revitalization, economic development, affordable housing and improved community facilities and services. Source: HousingPolicy.org
  • Community Development Block Grants (Entitlement): The CDBG entitlement program allocates annual grants to larger cities and urban counties to develop viable communities by providing decent housing, a suitable living environment, and opportunities to expand economic opportunities, principally for low- and moderate-income persons. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Community Development Block Grants (Section 108 Loan Guarantee): Section 108 is the loan guarantee provision of the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program. Section 108 provides communities with a source of financing for economic development, housing rehabilitation, public facilities, and large-scale physical development projects. This makes it one of the most potent and important public investment tools that HUD offers to local governments. It allows them to transform a small portion of their CDBG funds into federally guaranteed loans large enough to pursue physical and economic revitalization projects that can renew entire neighborhoods. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Community Development Block Grants (Small Cities): Also known as the Small Cities CDBG program, States award grants to smaller units of general local government that carry out community development activities. Annually, each State develops funding priorities and criteria for selecting projects. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Community Development Financial Institution: Community development financial institutions (CDFI) are financial institutions which provide credit and financial services to under-served markets and populations. To be certified as a CDFI, a financial institution must have a primary mission of community development, serve a target market, provide development services and financing and be accountable to the community. CDFIs cannot be government entities (though they are certified by the U.S. Treasury). Source: HousingPolicy.org
  • Community Engagement: The process of working collaboratively with and through groups of people affiliated by geographic proximity, special interest, or similar situations to address issues affecting the well-being of those people. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Community Garden: A private or public facility for cultivation of fruits, flowers, vegetables, or ornamental plants by more than one person or family. Source: A Planners Dictionary, ed. by M. Davidson & F. Dolnick. PAS Guide 521/522
  • Community Reinvestment Act (CRA): The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA, Pub.L. 95-128, title VIII of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1977, 91 Stat. 1147, 12 U.S.C. 2901 et seq.) encourages commercial banks and savings associations to meet the needs of borrowers in all segments of their communities, including low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. The act was passed in 1977 to reduce discriminatory credit practices against low-income neighborhoods. Source: HousingPolicy.org
  • Community Renewal – Renewal Communities/Empowerment Zones/Enterprise Communities (RC/EZ/EC): This is a program that uses an innovative approach to revitalization, bringing communities together through public and private partnerships to attract the investment necessary for sustainable economic and community development. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Community Resilience: Individual and collective capacity to respond to adversity and change. It is a community that takes intentional action to enhance the personal and collective capacity of its citizens and institutions to respond to and influence the course of social and economic change. For a community to be resilient, its members must put into practice early and effective actions so that they can respond to change. When responding to stressful events, a resilient community will be able to strengthen community bonds, resources, and the capacity to cope. Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Adminstration
  • Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA): A community of individuals who pledge support to a farm operation so that the farmland becomes, either legally or spiritually, the community’s farm, with the growers and consumers providing mutual support and sharing the risks and benefits of food production. Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agriculture Library
  • Commute: Regular travel between home and a fixed location (e.g., work, school). (TRB1) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Commuter: A person who travels regularly between home and work or school. (APTA1) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Commuter Lane: Another name for \High-Occupancy Vehicle Lane.\ (APTA1) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Commuter Rail (Transit): Urban passenger train service for short-distance travel between a central city and adjacent suburb. Does not include rapid rail transit or light rail service. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Compact Development: Land use patterns in which related activities are located close together, usually within convenient walking distance. Compact development improves accessibility by reducing travel distances and improving transportation options. Source: Victoria Transport Policy Institute
  • Comparison Group: A group in an analytic study (e.g., a cohort or case-control study) with whom the primary group of interest (exposed group in a cohort study or case-patients in a case-control study) is compared. The comparison group provides an estimate of the background or expected incidence of disease (in a cohort study) or exposure (in a case-control study). Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Comparison Value (CV): Calculated concentration of a substance in air, water, food, or soil that is unlikely to cause harmful (adverse) health effects in exposed people; used as a screening level during public health assessments. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Competence: An individual or groups ability to successfully deal with the demands placed on them by the environment, known as press. Source: (Glaas & Balfour)
  • Competitive Foods: Foods typically dispensed in vending machines or in school stores that compete with cafeteria fare in schools. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Complete Streets: 1) Complete Streets Partnership – Complete streets are designed and operated to enable safe access for all users. Pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders of all ages and abilities must be able to safely move along and across a complete street. Creating complete streets means transportation agencies must change their orientation toward building primarily for cars. Instituting a complete streets policy ensures that transportation agencies routinely design and operate the entire right of way to enable safe access for all users. Source: Smart Growth America
  • Completed Exposure Pathway: (See Exposure Pathway).The route a substance takes from its source (where it began) to its end point (where it ends), and how people can come into contact with (or get exposed to) it. An exposure pathway has five parts: a source of contamination; an environmental media and transport; a point of exposure; a route of exposure; and a receptor population. When all five parts are present, the exposure pathway is termed a completed exposure pathway. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, And Liability Act Of 1980 (CERCLA): CERCLA, also known as Superfund, is the federal law that concerns the removal or cleanup of hazardous substances in the environment and at hazardous waste sites. ATSDR, which was created by CERCLA, is responsible for assessing health issues and supporting public health activities related to hazardous waste sites or other environmental releases of hazardous substances. This law was later amended by the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA). Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Comprehensive Plan: (General or Master Plan) A document, or series of documents, that serves as a guide for making land use changes, preparation of capital improvement programs, and the rate, timing, and location of future growth. It is based upon establishing long-term goals and objectives to guide the future growth of a city. It is also known as a Master or General Plan. Source: City of Austin
  • Compressed Work Schedule: In the case of a full-time employee, an 80-hour biweekly basic work requirement that is scheduled by an agency for less than 10 workdays; and in the case of a part-time employee, a biweekly basic work requirement of less than 80 hours that is scheduled by an agency for less than 10 workdays and that may require the employee to work more than 8 hours in a day. Source: U.S. Office of Personnel Management
  • Concentration: The amount of a substance present in a certain amount of soil, water, air, food, blood, hair, urine, breath, or any other media. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Concurrence: Necessary public facilities and services to maintain the adopted level of service standards are available when the impacts of development occur. Source: A Planners Dictionary, ed. by M. Davidson & F. Dolnick. PAS Guide 521/522
  • Conditioned Air: Air that has been heated, cooled, humidified, or dehumidified to maintain an interior space within the \comfort zone.\ (Sometimes referred to as \tempered\ air.) Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Conformity: Process to assess the compliance of any transportation plan, program, or project with air quality implementation plans. The conformity process is defined by the Clean Air Act. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Confounding: The distortion of the association between an exposure and a health outcome by a third variable that is related to both. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Congestion Management Plan: Mechanism employing growth management techniques, including traffic level-of-service requirements, standards for public transit, trip reduction programs involving transportation systems management and jobs/housing balance strategies, and capital improvement programming, for the purpose of controlling and/ or reducing the cumulative regional traffic impacts of development. Source: A Planners Dictionary, ed. by M. Davidson & F. Dolnick. PAS Guide 521/522
  • Congestion Management System (CMS): Systematic process for managing congestion. Provides information on transportation system performance and finds alternative ways to alleviate congestion and enhance the mobility of people and goods, to levels that meet state and local needs. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Congestion Mitigation & Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ): A categorical Federal-aid funding program created with the ISTEA. Directs funding to projects that contribute to meeting National air quality standards. CMAQ funds generally may not be used for projects that result in the construction of new capacity available to SOVs (single-occupant vehicles). Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Congestion Pricing: Sometimes called value pricing – is a way of harnessing the power of the market to reduce the waste associated with traffic congestion. Congestion pricing works by shifting purely discretionary rush hour highway travel to other transportation modes or to off-peak periods, taking advantage of the fact that the majority of rush hour drivers on a typical urban highway are not commuters. By removing a fraction (even as small as 5%) of the vehicles from a congested roadway, pricing enables the system to flow much more efficiently, allowing more cars to move through the same physical space. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Connectivity: The degree to which a road or path system is connected, and therefore the directness of travel between destinations. A hierarchical road network with many dead-end streets that connect to a few major arterials provides less accessibility than a well-connected network. Increased connectivity reduces vehicle travel by reducing travel distances between destinations and by improving walking and cycling access, particularly where paths provide shortcuts, so walking and cycling are relatively direct. Source: Victoria Transport Policy Institute
  • Conservation: 1) Preserving and renewing, when possible, human and natural resources. The use, protection, and improvement of natural resources according to principles that will ensure their highest economic or social benefits. 2) Preserving and renewing natural resources to assure their highest economic or social benefit over the longest period of time. Clean rivers and lakes, wilderness areas, a diverse wildlife population, healthy soil, and clean air are natural resources worth conserving for future generations. 3) Careful management of resources so as to obtain the maximum possible benefits from them for present and future generations. Source: Sustainable Furnishings Council
  • Conservation Plan: 1) A plan set in place with the goal of utilizing, protecting, and improving an areas natural resources. 2) A document containing all major material needed for making decisions that will assure that the soil and water resources of a unit of land (or group of units of land) will be used and treated so as to achieve the conservation objectives which have been set forth. Source: Landscape Design Advisor
  • Conservation Zoning: Zoning that aims to preserve natural resources by regulating or limiting development in natural areas. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Constant Air Volume Systems: Air handling system that provides a constant air flow while varying the temperature to meet heating and cooling needs. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Contact: Exposure to a source of an infection; a person who has been exposed. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Contagious: Capable of being transmitted from one person to another by contact or close proximity. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Contaminant: A substance that is either present in an environment where it does not belong or is present at levels that might cause harmful (adverse) health effects. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Contextual (or Environmental) Factors: The physical, social and attitudinal environment in which people live and conduct their lives. Source: World Health Organization
  • Contour: Refers to the shape and the way land is formed. Source: Landscape Design Advisor
  • Control: In a case-control study, a member of the group of persons without the health problem under study. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Control Strategy Implementation Plan Revision: The implementation plan which contains specific strategies for controlling the emissions of and reducing ambient levels of pollutants in order to satisfy CAA requirements for demonstrations of reasonable further progress and attainment (including implementation plan revisions submitted to satisfy CAA. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Corporate Average Fuel Economy Standards (CAF): Originally established by Congress for new automobiles and later for light trucks. This law requires automobile manufacturers to produce vehicle fleets with a composite sales-weighted fuel economy not lower than the CAFE standards in a given year. For every vehicle that does not meet the standard, a fine is paid for every one-tenth of a mile per gallon that vehicle falls below the standard. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Corridor: A broad geographical band that follows a general directional flow connecting major sources of trips that may contain a number of streets, highways and transit route alignments. (APTA1) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis: 1) An analysis that compares the costs and consequences of intervention strategies. 2) In landscape architecture, a study of the potential cost of site purchase, demolition and improvement in comparison to the income or other benefit to be derived from site development. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development; American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Council of Landscape Architecture Registration Boards (CLARB): A coordinating agency formed in 1961 for state boards that administer licensing exams and maintain records for landscape architects to practice. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • COVID-19: a mild to severe respiratory illness that is caused by a coronavirus (Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 of the genus Betacoronavirus), is transmitted chiefly by contact with infectious material (such as respiratory droplets) or with objects or surfaces contaminated by the causative virus, and is characterized especially by fever, cough, and shortness of breath and may progress to pneumonia and respiratory failure. Source: Merriam-Webster
  • Crash: An event that produces injury and/or property damage, involves a motor vehicle in transport, and occurs on a trafficway or while the vehicle is still in motion after running off the trafficway. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED): An approach to problem-solving that considers environmental conditions and the opportunities they offer for crime or other unintended and undesirable behaviors. CPTED attempts to reduce or eliminate those opportunities by using elements of the environment to (1) control access; (2) provide opportunities to see and be seen; and (3) define ownership and encourage the maintenance of territory. Source: U.S. Department of Justice – Office of Community Oriented Policing Services
  • Criteria Pollutants: The 1970 amendments to the Clean Air Act required EPA to set National Ambient Air Quality Standards for certain pollutants known to be hazardous to human health. EPA has identified and set standards to protect human health and welfare for six pollutants: ozone, carbon monoxide, total suspended particulates, sulfur dioxide, lead, and nitrogen oxide. The term, \criteria pollutants\ derives from the requirement that EPA must describe the characteristics and potential health and welfare effects of these pollutants. It is on the basis of these criteria that standards are set or revised. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Cross-sectional Study: A descriptive epidemiological study that collects data on exposures and data on health outcomes at the same time within a defined population. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Crude: When referring to a rate, an overall or summary rate for a population, without adjustment. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Curb Extensions: The sidewalk and/or landscaped area on one or both sides of the road is extended to reduce the roadway to a single lane or minimum-width double lane. By reducing crossing distances, sidewalk widening is used to facilitate easier and safer pedestrian movement. Reducing roadway width results in vehicle speed reductions. When curb extensions are used at intersections, the resultant tightened radii ensure that vehicles negotiating the intersection do so at slow speeds. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Curb Ramps: (Curb Cuts)The basic unit of accessibility in a pedestrian circulation network. Even on steep sites, pedestrians using motorized wheelchairs or being assisted in traveling can use curb ramps, and a connection to the street crossing should be available if there is a pedestrian walkway. Curb ramps are the only item of right-of-way construction specifically required in the DOJ title II regulation. Source: United States Access Board

D

  • Dampers: Controls that vary airflow through an air outlet, inlet, or duct. A damper position may be immovable, manually adjustable or part of an automated control system. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Decision Analysis: The application of quantitative methods to decision-making. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Decision Tree: A branching chart that represents the logical sequence or pathway of a clinical or public health decision. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Delayed Health Effect: A disease or an injury that happens as a result of exposures that might have occurred in the past. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Demand Responsive Vehicle (Transit): A nonfixed-route, nonfixed-schedule vehicle that operates in response to calls from passengers or their agents to the transit operator or dispatcher. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Demand-Responsive: 1) Descriptive term for a service type, usually considered paratransit, in which a user can access transportation service that can be variably routed and timed to meet changing needs on an as-needed basis. 2)Any system of transporting individuals, including the provision of designated public transportation service by public entities and the provision of transportation service by private entities, including but not limited to specified public transportation service, which is not a fixed route system. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration; United States Access Board
  • Demographic Information: Personal characteristics of a person or group (e.g., age, sex, race/ethnicity, residence, and occupation) demographic information is used in descriptive epidemiology to characterize patients or populations. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Density: The average number of dwelling units or persons per gross acre of land, usually expressed in units per acre, excluding any area of a street bordering the outside perimeter of a development site. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Density Bonus: An incentive-based tool that permits developers to increase the maximum allowable development on a property in exchange for helping the community to achieve public policy goals such as affordable housing. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Dermal: Referring to the skin. For example, dermal absorption means passing through the skin. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Dermal Contact: Contact with (touching) the skin [see route of exposure]. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Design: The creative illustration, planning and specification of space for the greatest possible amount of harmony, utility, value and beauty. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Designed Landscape: A site that might appear to be natural but has elements and features that were planned and specified by a landscape architect. Designed landscapes include Central Park in New York to the siting of buildings. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Detection Limit: The lowest concentration of a chemical that can reliably be distinguished from a zero concentration. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Determinants of Health: The range of personal, social, economic and environmental factors which determine the health status of individuals or populations. Source: World Health Organization
  • Development: The physical extension and/or construction of urban land uses. Development activities include: subdivision of land; construction or alteration of structures, roads, utilities, and other facilities; installation of septic systems; grading; deposit of refuse, debris, or fill materials; and clearing of natural vegetative cover (with the exception of agricultural activities). Routine repair and maintenance activities are exempted. Source: A Planners Dictionary, ed. by M. Davidson & F. Dolnick. PAS Guide 521/522
  • Dial-A-Ride: Term for demand-responsive systems usually delivering door-to-door service to clients, who make request by telephone on an as-needed reservation or subscription basis. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Differential Pricing (Variable Pricing): Time-of-day pricing and tolls that vary by other factors like facility location, season, day-of-week, or air quality impact. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation
  • Diffusers And Grilles: Components of the ventilation system that distribute and return air to promote air circulation in the occupied space. As used in this document, supply air enters a space through a diffuser or vent and return air leaves a space through a grille. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Dilapidated: (Housing.) A housing unit that does not provide safe and adequate shelter, and in its present condition endangers the health, safety or well-being of the occupants. Such a housing unit shall have one or more critical defects, or a combination of intermediate defects in sufficient number or extent to require considerable repair or rebuilding. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Dillon’s Rule: Local governments possess only those powers specifically delegated to them by state law, or fairly implied from expressly granted powers (cf. home rule). Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Disability: An outcome of interactions between health conditions (diseases, disorders and injuries) and contextual factors (a.external environmental factors such as social attitudes, architectural characteristics, legal and social structures, as well as climate, terrain etc. and b. internal personal factors, which include gender, age, coping styles, social background, education, profession, past and current experience, overall behavior pattern, character and other factors that influence how disability is experienced by the individual.) Source: World Health Organization
  • Disability-adjusted life year (DALY): A measure of overall disease burden; one DALY is one year of “healthy” life lost due to disability or poor health. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Discrimination: Differential treatment or practice either intentional or otherwise that can occur through action, policy, procedure or practice.
  • Disease Prevention: Covers measures not only to prevent the occurrence of disease, such as risk factor reduction or protective factor promotion, but also to arrest its progress and reduce its consequences once established. Source: World Health Organization
  • Disease Registry: A system of ongoing registration of all cases of a particular disease or health condition in a defined population. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Disinfectants: One of three groups of antimicrobials registered by EPA for public health uses. EPA considers an antimicrobial to be a disinfectant when it destroys or irreversibly inactivates infectious or other undesirable organisms, but not necessarily their spores. EPA registers three types of disinfectant products based upon submitted efficacy data: limited, general or broad spectrum, and hospital disinfectant. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Disparity: (Health) Preventable differences in the burden of disease, injury, violence, or opportunities to achieve optimal health that are experienced by socially disadvantaged populations that are inequitable and are directly related to the historical and current unequal distribution of social, political, economic, and environmental resources. Source: Centers for Disease Control
  • Displacement: When long-time or original neighborhood residents move from a gentrified area because of higher rents, mortgages, and property taxes. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Distribution: In epidemiology, the frequency and pattern of health-related characteristics and events in a population. In statistics, the frequency and pattern of the values or categories of a variable. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Districts: Urbanized areas that specialize in a particular activity such as airports and industrial areas. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Donut Areas: Geographic areas outside a metropolitan planning area boundary, but inside the boundary of a nonattainment or maintenance area that contains any part of a metropolitan area(s). These areas are not isolated rural nonattainment and maintenance areas. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Dose: The amount of a substance to which a person is exposed over some time period. Dose is a measurement of exposure often expressed as milligram (amount) per kilogram (a measure of body weight) per day (a measure of time) when people eat or drink contaminated water, food, or soil. An \exposure dose\ is how much of a substance is encountered in the environment. An \absorbed dose\ is the amount of a substance that actually got into the body. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Dose (For Chemicals That Are Not Radioactive): The amount of a substance to which a person is exposed over some time period. Dose is a measurement of exposure. Dose is often expressed as milligram (amount) per kilogram (a measure of body weight) per day (a measure of time) when people eat or drink contaminated water, food, or soil. In general, the greater the dose, the greater the likelihood of an effect. An \exposure dose\ is how much of a substance is encountered in the environment. An \absorbed dose\ is the amount of a substance that actually got into the body through the eyes, skin, stomach, intestines, or lungs. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Dose (For Radioactive Chemicals): The radiation dose is the amount of energy from radiation that is actually absorbed by the body. This is not the same as measurements of the amount of radiation in the environment. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Dose-Response Relationship: Association between an exposure and health outcome that varies in a consistently increasing or decreasing fashion as the amount of exposure (dose) increases. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Drainage: The running off of water from a land surface or subsurface, such as through sewers or natural means. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Driver: 1) A person who operates a motorized vehicle. If more than one person drives on a single trip, the person who drives the most miles is classified as the principal driver.2) An occupant of a vehicle who is in physical control of a motor vehicle in transport or, for an out of-control vehicle, an occupant who was in control until control was lost. (FHWA3) (NHTSA3) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Driving Under the Influence (DUI): The driving or operating of any vehicle or common carrier while drunk or under the influence of liquor or narcotics. (FTA1) Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Dwelling: Any enclosed space wholly or partly used or intended to be used for living, sleeping, cooking, and eating. (Temporary housing, as hereinafter defined, shall not be classified as a dwelling.) Industrialized housing and modular construction that conform to nationally accepted industry standards and are used or intended for use for living, sleeping, cooking, and eating purposes shall be classified as dwellings. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Dwelling Unit: Dwelling unit means a single unit of residence for a family or one or more persons. Examples of dwelling units include: a single family home; an apartment unit within an apartment building; and in other types of dwellings in which sleeping accommodations are provided but toileting or cooking facilities are shared by occupants of more than one room or portion of the dwelling, rooms in which people sleep. Examples of the latter include dormitory rooms and sleeping accommodations in shelters intended for occupancy as a residence for homeless persons. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Dynamic Pricing: Tolls that vary in real time in response to changing congestion levels, as opposed to variable pricing that follows a fixed schedule. Source: U.S. Department of T

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  • E-Z Pass: An electronic toll collection technology deployed by a regional consortium of transportation agencies in Delaware, New Jersey and New York. The technology is compatible with similar systems used by tolling agencies in several northeastern states. Plans call for the deployment of E-ZPass on more than 700 toll lanes along 415 miles of roads, tunnels and bridges in the Northeast United States. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation
  • Easement: The right of a person, government agency, or public utility company to use public or private land owned by another entity or individual for a specific purpose. Source: HousingPolicy.org
  • Ecological Footprint: A measure of human demand on the Earth’s ecosystems that compares human demand with the Earth’s ecological capacity to regenerate. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Ecological Model of Aging: A model based on the assumption that patterns of health and well-being are affected by a dynamic interplay among biologic, behavioral, and environmental factors, an interplay that unfolds throughout the life course of individuals, families, and communities. Source: Satariano, Epidemiology of Aging
  • Ecological Resilience: The degree to which ecosystems can absorb disturbance or stress and remain with their natural variability. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Ecological Study: An epidemiological study in which the unit of analysis is groups of people rather than individuals. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Ecology: The relationship of living things to one another and their environment, or the study of such relationships. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Economic Development: Any change in a community that enables greater production, increased employment, and a better distribution of goods and services. Source: A Planner’s Dictionary, ed. by M. Davidson & F. Dolnick. PAS Guide 521/522)
  • Economic Development Initiative (EDI): Program that provides communities with grants that can be used in tandem with Section 108 guaranteed loans. EDI provides communities with a source of financing for economic development, housing rehabilitation, and large-scale physical development projects. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Ecosystem: A dynamic complex of plant, animal, and microorganism communities, and their nonliving environment, interacting as a functional unit. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Effect: The result of a cause. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Effectiveness: A measure of the extent to which a specific intervention, procedure, regimen, or service, when deployed in the field in routine circumstances, does what it is intended to do for a specified population. Source: World Health Organization
  • Efficacy: The ability of an intervention or program to produce the intended or expected results under ideal conditions. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Efficiency: The ability of an intervention or program to produce the intended or expected results with a minimum expenditure of time and resources. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Egress: A continuous and unobstructed way of exit travel from any point in a building or facility to a public way. Source: U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division – Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Elder Cottage Housing Opportunity (ECHO) Units: Small, free-standing, barrier-free, energy-efficient, and removable units designed to be installed adjacent to existing single-family dwellings. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Element: An architectural or mechanical component of a building, facility, space, or site, e.g., telephone, curb ramp, door, drinking fountain, seating, or water closet. Source: U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division – Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Embodied Energy: How much energy was required to extract, process, package, transport, install, and recycle or dispose of materials that make up a buildings construction. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Emergency Shelter Grant (ESG) Program: A Federal grant program designed to help improve the quality of existing emergency shelters for the homeless, to make available additional shelters, to meet the costs of operating shelters, to provide essential social services to homeless individuals, and to help prevent homelessness. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Eminent Domain (condemnation): The legal right of a government to take private property for public use (such as a road or utility corridor) after compensating the owner for its fair market value. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Emission: Pollution discharged into the atmosphere from smokestacks, other vents, and surface areas of commercial or industrial facilities; from residential chimneys; and from motor vehicle, locomotive, or aircraft exhausts. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Emissions Budget: The part of the State Implementation Plan (SIP) that identifies the allowable emissions levels, mandated by the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS), for certain pollutants emitted from mobile, stationary, and area sources. The emissions levels are used for meeting emission reduction milestones, attainment, or maintenance demonstrations. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Emissions Inventory: 1) A complete list of sources and amounts of pollutant emissions within a specific area and time interval. 2) A listing, by source, of the amount of air pollutants discharged into the atmosphere of a community; used to establish emission standards. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Empowerment Zones: Empowerment Zones and Enterprise Communities are part of The Empowerment Zones and Enterprise Communities (EZ/EC) program. The Empowerment Zones and Enterprise Communities (EZ/EC) program was designed by the federal government to encourage comprehensive planning and investment aimed at the economic, physical, and social development of the neediest urban and rural areas in the United States. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Endemic: The constant presence of an agent or health condition within a given geographic area or population; can also refer to the usual prevalence of an agent or condition. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Energy Smart: Meeting your energy needs cost effectively and with the least impact on the environment. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Enhancement Activities: Refers to activities related to a particular transportation project that ‘enhance’ or contribute to the existing or proposed project. Examples of such activities include provision of facilities for pedestrians or cyclists, landscaping or other scenic beautification projects, historic preservation, control and removal of outdoor advertising, archaeological planning and research, and mitigation of water pollution due to highway runoff. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Envelope: The skin of a building including the windows, doors, walls, foundation, basement slab, ceilings, roof and insulation that separates the interior of a building from the outdoor environment. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Environment: The sum of all external conditions affecting the life, development and survival of an organism. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Environmental Agents: Conditions other than indoor air contaminants that cause stress, comfort, and/or health problems (e.g., humidity extremes, drafts, lack of air circulation, noise, and over-crowding). Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Environmental Assessment: An environmental analysis prepared pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act to determine whether a federal action would significantly affect the environment and thus require a more detailed environmental impact statement. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Environmental Audit: An independent assessment of the current status of a party’s compliance with applicable environmental requirements or of a party’s environmental compliance policies, practices, and controls. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Environmental Barrier: An element or space of the built environment which limits accessibility to or use of the built environment by environmentally limited persons. Source: Illinois Compiled Statutes 41 ILCS 25 Environmental Barriers Act. Section 3
  • Environmental Buoying: The process by which environmental features support or encourage healthy and adaptive behavioral choices. Source: Glaas & Balfour
  • Environmental Design Professions: Landscape architecture, (civil) engineering, urban planning and architecture. Agronomy is also often included in this group. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Environmental Engineering: The field of engineering that focuses on the environmental performance of built environment elements ranging from buildings to large-scale public works. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Environmental Exposure: Human exposure to conditions in the environment, either positive or negative. In both cases, threshold levels do not necessarily need to be surpassed in an acute sense for effect, but low-level chronic exposure can be one of the most common forms of environmental exposure.
  • Environmental Facilitators: The inverse of an environmental barrier, elements or spaces of the built environment which allow access and allow environmental buoying.
  • Environmental Factor: An extrinsic factor (e.g., geology, climate, insects, sanitation, or health services) that affects an agent and the opportunity for exposure. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Environmental Health: In its broadest sense, environmental health comprises those aspects of human health, disease, and injury that are determined or influenced by factors in the environment. This includes the study of both the direct pathological effects of various chemical, physical, and biological agents, as well as the effects on health of the broad physical and social environment, which includes housing, urban development, land-use and transportation, industry, and agriculture. Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
  • Environmental Health Services: A resource for sanitarians, environmental health specialists, environmental health officers, students, and other public health professionals. The Environmental Health Services Branch is part of the National Center for Environmental Health’s Division of Emergency and Environmental Health Services. CDC’s National Center for Environmental Health (NCEH) plans, directs, and coordinates a national program to maintain and improve the health of the American people by promoting a healthy environment and by preventing premature death and avoidable illness and disability caused by non-infectious, non-occupational environmental and related factors. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Environmental Impact: The change to an area’s natural resources, including animal and plant life, resulting from use by man. Some projects may require conducting of an \environmental impact study\ before development can proceed. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Environmental Impact Assessment: The process of identifying, predicting, evaluating, and mitigating the environmental effects of development proposals prior to major decisions being taken and commitments made, usually conducted to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Environmental Impact Statement (EIS): Report developed as part of the National Environmental Policy Act requirements, which details any adverse economic, social, and environmental effects of a proposed transportation project for which Federal funding is being sought. Adverse effects could include air, water, or noise pollution; destruction or disruption of natural resources; adverse employment effects; injurious displacement of people or businesses; or disruption of desirable community or regional growth. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Environmental Inventory: Record of an area’s natural and man-made resources, including vegetation, animal life, geological characteristics and mankind’s presence in such forms as housing, highways and even hazardous wastes. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Environmental Justice: 1) circumstances in which no segment of the population, regardless of race, color, national origin, or income, suffers disproportionately from adverse human health or environmental effects, and all people live in clean, healthy, and sustainable communities; 2) Equal protection from environmental hazards for individuals, groups, or communities regardless of race, ethnicity, or economic status. This applies to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies, and implies that no population of people should be forced to shoulder a disproportionate share of negative environmental impacts of pollution or environmental hazard due to a lack of political or economic strength levels. Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Environmental Media: Soil, water, air, biota (plants and animals), or any other parts of the environment that can contain contaminants. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Environmental Media and Transport Mechanism: Environmental media include water, air, soil, and biota (plants and animals). Transport mechanisms move contaminants from the source to points where human exposure can occur. The environmental media and transport mechanism is the second part of an exposure pathway. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Environmental Press: The demands placed on an individual or group by the environment. It can be positive, negative, or neutral. It is important to realize that environments can be harmful both because they are overly demanding and because they demand too little. Source: (Glaas and Balfour)
  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): A U.S. government agency responsible for developing and enforcing regulations that guide the use of land and natural resources. Source: American Society of Landscape Architects
  • Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS): Mixture of smoke from the burning end of a cigarette, pipe, or cigar and smoke exhaled by the smoker (also secondhand smoke (SHS) or passive smoking). Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Environmental Transition: A shift in the demographic profile of a population characterized by declining infant and child mortality, falling death rates due to infectious disease, and decreased fertility leading to population aging and increasing contribution of adult chronic and degenerative diseases to population morbidity and mortality. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Epidemic: The occurrence of more cases of disease, injury, or other health condition than expected in a given area or among a specific group of persons during a particular period. Usually, the cases are presumed to have a common cause or to be related to one another in some way (see also outbreak). Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS): CDCs 2-year training program in applied epidemiology for public health professionals. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Epidemiology: The study of the distribution and determinants of health conditions or events among populations and the application of that study to control health problems. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Epidemiology, Analytic: The aspect of epidemiology concerned with why and how a health problem occurs. Analytic epidemiology uses comparison groups to provide baseline or expected values so that associations between exposures and outcomes can be quantified and hypotheses about the cause of the problem can be tested (see also study, analytic). Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Epidemiology, Applied: The application or practice of epidemiology to control and prevent health problems. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Epidemiology, Descriptive: The aspect of epidemiology concerned with organizing and summarizing data regarding the persons affected (e.g., the characteristics of those who became ill), time (e.g., when they become ill), and place (e.g., where they might have been exposed to the cause of illness). Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Epidemiology, Field: Applied epidemiology (i.e., the application or practice of epidemiology to control and prevent health problems), particularly when the epidemiologist(s) must travel to and work in the community in which the health problem is occurring or has occurred. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Equitable Use: One of the principles of Universal Design: That the design is useful and marketable to people with diverse abilities. Source: North Carolina State University
  • Ergonomics: Applied science that investigates the impact of people’s physical environment on their health and comfort (e.g., determining the proper chair height for computer operators). Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Evaluation: Systematic and objective examination of activities to determine their relevance, effectiveness, and impact. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Evidence-based Design: Design in which decisions about the built environment are based on credible research to achieve the best possible health outcomes. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Evidence-based Practice: The idea that empirical evidence should be systematically collected, evaluated, and used as the basis for decisions. Source: Making Healthy Places
  • Excess Risk: Calculated as the risk among the exposed group minus the risk among the unexposed group. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Exhaust Ventilation: Mechanical removal of air from a portion of a building (e.g., piece of equipment, room, or general area). Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Exposed Group: A group whose members have had contact with a suspected cause of, or possess a characteristic that is a suspected determinant of, a particular health problem. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Exposure: Contact with a substance by swallowing, breathing, or touching the skin or eyes. Exposure may be short-term [acute exposure], of intermediate duration, or long-term [chronic exposure]. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Exposure Assessment: The process of finding out how people come into contact with a hazardous substance, how often and for how long they are in contact with the substance, and how much of the substance they are in contact with. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Exposure Investigation: The collection and analysis of site-specific information and biologic tests (when appropriate) to determine whether people have been exposed to hazardous substances. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Exposure Pathway: The route a substance takes from its source (where it began) to its end point (where it ends), and how people can come into contact with (or get exposed to) it. An exposure pathway has five parts: a source of contamination; an environmental media and transport; a point of exposure; a route of exposure; and a receptor population. When all five parts are present, the exposure pathway is termed a completed exposure pathway. (Also Completed Exposure Pathway) Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Exposure Registry: A system of ongoing follow up of people who have had documented environmental exposures. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Exposure-Dose Reconstruction: Method of estimating the amount of people’s past exposure to hazardous substances. Source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
  • Express Lanes: A lane or set of lanes physically separated or barriered from the general-purpose capacity provided within major roadway corridors. Express lane access is managed by limiting the number of entranced and exit points to the facility. Express lanes may be operated as reversible flow facilities or bi-directional facilities. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation
  • Expressway: A controlled access, divided arterial highway for through traffic, the intersections of which are usually separated from other roadways by differing grades. Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
  • Extermination: The control and elimination of insects, rodents, or other pests by eliminating their harborage places; by removing or making inaccessible materials that may serve as their food; by poisoning, spraying, fumigating, trapping, or any other recognized and legal pest elimination methods approved by the local or state authority having such administrative authority. Extermination is one of the components of integrated pest management. Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Extreme Weather Event: An event that is rare within its statistical reference distribution at a particular place. Definitions of rare vary, but an extreme weather event would normally be as rare as or rarer than the 10th or 90th percentile. By definition, the characteristics of what is called extreme weather may vary from place to place. Extreme weather events may typically include floods and droughts. Source: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change