A New Tool for Measuring Walkability

Steve Mouzon finds fault with the uniform application of the 1/4 mile walkability radius, regardless of context. And, in the first in a series of articles, he introduces a new tool for understanding and building walkable places.

Mouzon takes aim at the quarter-mile radius (or 5-minute walk), "which has been held up for a century as the distance Americans will walk before driving," calling it "a myth." In its place he proposes the use of a new tool - "Walk Appeal" - to describe walkability, which in this article he aligns with the transect. As the transect become less dense and more suburban, the comfortable walking radius actually shrinks - all the way to 25 feet along a sidewalk which runs between an arterial thoroughfare and a surface parking lot. 

Future posts will look at the metrics that determine which Walk Appeal setting a particular streetscape achieves, how Walk Appeal can predict the viability of walkable neighborhood businesses, and the differences that Walk Appeal streetscape repairs can make in order to cast a broader net for walking customers, writes Mouzon.

Full Story: Walk Appeal

Comments

Book cover of the Guide to Graduate Planning Programs 4th Edition

Thinking about Grad School?

New! 4th Edition of the Planetizen Guide to Graduate Urban Planning Programs just released.
Starting at $24.95

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $209
Red necktie with map of Boston

Tie one on to celebrate your city

Choose from over 20 styles of neckties imprinted with detailed city or transit maps.
$44.95
Women's t-shirt with map of Los Angeles

City T-Shirts for the ladies!

Women's Supersoft CityFabric© Fashion Fit Tees. Now available in six different cities.
$24.00