Thursday, July 26, 2007

Which North End Neighborhood is Most Walkable?

Here is a site where you can score your neighborhood's walkability simply by entering your address. The scoring is based on several factors: locating nearby stores, restaurants, schools, parks, etc. (Disclaimer: the site is dependent on Google, and thus dated and in some cases erroneous on addresses; it also does not weigh all walkability factors).

I entered my address only to find out that Salemtown is on the high end of "no walkability" (48). An address 3 blocks up in Germantown has "some walkable locations" (63). Historic Buena Vista has an even higher "some" score (68). But our friends in Hope Gardens have a score (71) that makes it "possible to get by without owning a car."

Given the limitations of the scale, does this match with your experience of the neighborhoods?


  1. I dunno, the walkability of all the neighborhoods you mention seem fairly equivalent to me. It may even be a little misleading in the North End's favor, too, since some of what we're getting credit for having nearby is B2B industrial. (At least I assume so: Wang's Enterprises under Grocery? Gerald's Coffee Services under Coffee Shops? Know anything about those?)

    On the other hand, Karsten and I enjoy walking the mile or so downtown to hit my favorite pastry & coffee shop (Provence), the beautiful library, our cool hair place (Posh), and so on. So my threshold for walkability may just be higher than what they're using. :)

  2. Well, my Bellevue neighborhood just scored a 2, despite Charlie Tygard's attempt to pave every piece of available land!

  3. My piece of Glencliff/Woodbine scored a 63. Of course it's counting "The Lion's Den" as a bookstore...

    But having recently been forced to explore the walkability of my neighborhood, yeah I think a 63 is probably about right.

  4. One huge flaw in this is the premise that walking is a means to a destination, as opposed to walking because one enjoys walking.

    Having sidewalks is a huge plus in walkability*. If I was devising the scoring, sidewalks would be a big plus..also, the map didn't include Bicentennial Mall, which is a nice destination as well as a great place to just plain WALK.

  5. John H: Good point. It should be a mix of what you can walk to and how well the neighborhood lends itself to walking at all. And yes, as you say, sidewalks are key.