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Walkable Neighborhoods

© Urban Advantage and Roma Design

Walkability offers surprising benefits to our health, the environment, our finances, and our communities.

Health: The average resident of a walkable neighborhood weighs 6-10 pounds less than someone who lives in a sprawling neighborhood.1

Cities with good public transit and access to amenities promote happiness.2

Environment: 87% of CO2 emissions are from burning fossil fuels.3 Your feet are zero-pollution transportation machines.

Finances: Cars are the second largest household expense in the U.S.4 One point of Walk Score is worth up to $3,250 of value for your property.5 Read the research report.

Communities: Walkability is associated with higher levels of arts organizations, creativity, and civic engagement.6

Popular cities: Find a walkable apartment in Chicago, Seattle, Portland, Oakland or Minneapolis.

Find homes for sale: Chicago real estate, San Francisco real estate, Seattle real estate, Washington DC real estate, Boston real estate.

One-Mile Walk in a Compact Neighborhood

A one-mile walk in Seattle's Phinney Ridge takes you through a grid-like street network with a mix of residences and businesses.

One-Mile Walk in a Sprawling Suburb

A one-mile walk in Bellevue, WA with cul-de-sacs and winding streets has few shops and services within walking distance.

Maps courtesy of Lawrence Frank & Co. and the Sightline Institute.

What makes a neighborhood walkable?

  • A center: Walkable neighborhoods have a center, whether it's a main street or a public space.
  • People: Enough people for businesses to flourish and for public transit to run frequently.
  • Mixed income, mixed use: Affordable housing located near businesses.
  • Parks and public space: Plenty of public places to gather and play.
  • Pedestrian design: Buildings are close to the street, parking lots are relegated to the back.
  • Schools and workplaces: Close enough that most residents can walk from their homes.
  • Complete streets: Streets designed for bicyclists, pedestrians, and transit.