The Benefits of a Walkable Neighborhood

Last Updated: June 13, 2008By

Here is an article from wisebread that weighs in on the benefit of a walkable community. I am always fascinated at the idea about being about to walk to school, work, the grocery store, nightlife, etc. from home; yet I live in Orange County, and there is not that many communities that allow this. Yet with the rise of reurbanization and new apartment complexes located nearer to conveniences, this could be the future, and help our wallets with less gas being churned.

“When I lived in Honolulu, Hawaii, I walked practically everywhere because my family did not have a car. The grocery store was a block away, and the beach was less than a mile south. Nearly everything we needed was within walking distance because Honolulu is a fairly densely populated city. Before my family moved to California, we heard from my aunt that not having a car in California is like not having legs because you have to drive almost everywhere. Unfortunately, this is certainly true in the exurbs of Southern California and many suburbs in the Bay Area. As a result, we now drive almost everywhere.

I think there are quite a few benefits to live in a highly walkable neighborhood. One obvious reason is that you can save quite a bit of money and time on transportation. When I visited my inlaws in Southern California last winter, I felt like we spent hours and hours inside of cars. Most of the trips were small errands like going to the grocery store or getting lunch, but they seemed to take a very long time. When I told an aunt that my commute to work each day is 9 miles each way she said to me, “That’s not a commute! That’s going to the grocery store!” Understandably, it does not make sense to walk when the nearest grocer is so far away, but the cost of driving so much really adds up especially when gas is topping $4.50 a gallon here in California.”

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