Publication Date


Committee Chair

Mark P. Kumler, Ph.D.

Committee Members

Fang Ren, Ph.D.


Adventist communities are the subject of much epidemiological research due to their homogeneous lifestyle characteristics. Little is known about how Loma Linda’s built environment influences its Adventist community making it the city with the highest life expectancy in the U.S. One approach is to measure the potential of a city to promote walking, but there is a lack of tools that measure multiple dimensions of this built environment indicator. We developed a built environment toolbox taking into account different factors: access, density, diversity, and quality. A pilot study was conducted to compare the built environment of the city of Loma Linda with the city of Redlands in California. The toolset used network analysis functions in order to test the indexes. The indicators used were access to recreational areas, population density, land use diversity, and quality of sidewalks. Data were obtained from subjects of the Adventists Health Study 2. The city of Loma Linda presented better access to recreational areas, higher population density, and more diverse land use in the participants’ built environment. These findings should inform urban planners in order to consider walkable indicators that can promote a healthy community.


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