FitNSW 2018: Building healthier and happier communities through our built environment

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This March the Heart Foundation NSW and the NSW Ministry of Health are bringing together leading researchers and thought leaders to discuss how planning for active and healthy communities can have a real impact on residents’ physical and mental health at FitNSW 2018.

This event comes at a critical time with just over half of the NSW population currently meeting the recommended level of at least 30 minutes of physical activity on most days of the week. Research also shows that a quarter of Australians feel lonely almost all of the time or on a regular basis1 which has been associated with increased blood pressure, higher cholesterol levels, Alzheimer’s disease and premature death2.

Keynote speakers at FitNSW 2018 include:

“People who live within 400 metres of public open space are more likely to engage in moderate to vigorous physical activity than those who don’t,” said Julie Anne Mitchell, Cardiovascular Health Director, Heart Foundation NSW. “Well planned environments where people can walk, cycle or enjoy green spaces can really make a difference in decreasing the rates of chronic diseases and mental health issues for people living in these communities.”

FitNSW is an annual interagency forum to showcase international and NSW best practice initiatives to encourage increased levels of physical activity. This event emerged from a similar annual FitCity series which has been held in New York City for many years. Over 280 delegates have registered for FitNSW 2018 indicating strong interest among professionals and elected members across the planning, transport and health sectors in addressing the challenges associated with creating healthy and active communities in our complex and changing cities.

The event will also unpack local Sydney infrastructure projects including the Sydney City Metro, Bennelong Bridge, Birriwa Reserve Outdoor Youth Space and The Greenway which is a sustainable transport and urban environmental corridor connecting Sydney’s inner west.


What: FitNSW 2018 – Placemakers and Cityshapers: The pathway to active and healthy communities.

Where: Aerial UTS Function Centre, Ultimo, Sydney.

When: 8:30am to 1:00pm, Thursday 15 March 2018.

Contact: Tina Wall, 0408 627 799,

1 Australian Red Cross, 2017

2 The Conversation, 26 Feb 2018



The Heart Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to fighting the single biggest killer of Australians – heart disease. For more than 50 years, it’s led the battle to save lives and improve the heart health of all Australians. Its sights are set on a world where people don’t suffer or die prematurely because of heart disease. Visit for further information.


Alison Wares, 0478 313 656, or Tina Wall, 0408 627 799,