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How Walkable is your neighborhood?

July 18, 2007

My friend Jamie recently posted this to his biking blog, and I thought it deserved to be passed on:

Walk – How walkable is your house?

Essentially, you give it your address and it will search Google’s database for nearby amenities like groceries, schools, hardware stores, movie theathers, etc. It scores how close everything is, and assigns your address a 1-100 score indicating how walking-friendly it appears.

Now, it doesn’t take into account things like the presence of sidewalks, the size of the street, speed limits, etc – but it does seem to give a decent thumbnail-sketch indication of how good your neighborhood is.

My house scored 42 of 100, which on their scale is “not walkable”, or:

Only a few destinations are within easy walking range. For most errands, driving is a must.

The closest:
0.30 miles Park
0.35 Grocery store
0.44 Restaurant
0.49 Dry cleaner
0.50 Bar
0.50 Drug store
0.53 School
0.76 Coffee shop
0.77 Bookstore
0.89 Library
1.18 Hardware store
1.60 Movie theater
2.22 Day care

I looked up some of my previous apartments, and my parents’ house – my apartments fared much better (duh – I was blocks from High Street), while my parents’ house was very poor (again, duh – they live in a cul-de-sac suburb)


2 Comments leave one →
  1. Jamie permalink
    July 18, 2007 12:51 pm

    It is a bit misleading – it can’t take into consideration the stuff you said, for sure. I think their concept of walkable is anything within two miles, which is a distance that most folks probably don’t consider walkable. I think that’s a shame, naturally, but it’s a fact.

    I think that for the reasons you mention – lack of sidewalk consideration and the like – this is actually a better tool for bikers.

  2. Anonymous permalink
    July 18, 2007 1:05 pm

    It’s an interesting question of what the maximum “walkable” distance is – would you walk from your house to I-71? It’d be a 1.4 mile walk for me – I wouldn’t do it, certainly not if I had to carry anything back with me. Half that would be about the maximum I would expect, certainly if I had to carry something heavy back with me (i.e. groceries)

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