The facts are in — and they're surprising: Washington, D.C., is the nation's most walkable city!
Yes, that's right. I thought the same thing: What about New York (just for starters)? Turns out, it's Number Two.
I heard a fleeting mention of this yesterday on the radio and looked it up today thinking I had misheard. But according to a report
prepared by George Washington University's School of Business, Washington has more Walkable Urban Places (WalkUPs) than New York City, Boston, San Francisco or Chicago.
Having lived and walked in three of these top five (and not owned a car in two of them),
I'll admit I was scratching my head. But then I started reading
the report. WalkUPs are based on the amount of office and retail space and a Walk Score, which looks at how easy it is to run errands without a car. New York comes in second because although Manhattan earns an 89-percent WalkUP score, the other boroughs aren't quite so walkable.
The most amazing nugget: The D.C. area has the most balanced walkability ratio between city (51 percent) and suburbs (49 percent). Really? The George Washington University researchers must be strolling in Arlington or Bethesda, not Oak Hill. Still, there are more paths here than there used to be, and Metro's Silver Line (4 and a half miles from my house) opens a week from today.
So I'm optimistic about walking in the suburbs. It's nice to know I'm not alone.
Labels: city, suburbs, walking