Background: Public health has called for more research to integrate ‘third places’ in studies on built environment, neighbourhoods, and health. Third places are locations aside from homes or workplaces that facilitate social interaction and support. They may be public facilities/institutions (e.g. sports facilities, parks, religious centres) or businesses (e.g. restaurants, cultural centres).
Objectives: To describe characteristics of ‘third places’ reported by Montreal residents and assess types of third places associated with self-reported health.
Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study of adults in Montreal, Canada, from the Interventions, Research, and Action in Cities Team cohort. We used map-based survey data to identify third places visited in the past month (park, sport, cultural, volunteering, religious/spiritual, restaurant/bar) and survey data on health status, personal well-being, and covariates (age, gender, race, income). Multivariable logistic regression models assessed types of third places associated with health status and the Personal Well-being Index, adjusted for covariates.
Conclusion: Our findings highlight the popularity of third places and association with health. Yet more research is needed to understand how third places impact population health to support healthy city design.
Firth CL, Thierry B, Shareck M, Fuller D, Winters M, Kestens Y. ‘Third places’ and their role for population health: A study in Montreal, Canada. Poster presented to: American Public Health Association Annual Meeting and Expo; October 2020; virtual meeting.