Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America, One Step at a Time [Kindle Edition] (321 pages, Jeff Speck, Nov. 13, 2012)
Also discussed here: The walkable city (17 min. video, TED, Sep 2013)
Today we review a book by Jeff Speck called the Walkable City which surveys the design of cities when to comes to walkability and the trend toward driving and away from walking in many cities. He points out that among other things, that large surface areas dedicated to parking spaces and taken away from pedestrian malls and urban parks is a prime obstacle to a city’s walkability. There are reasons why cities such as New York, Boston and Portland in the USA or Vancouver or Victoria in Canada are seen as more pedestrian friendly than Dallas or Winnipeg. The measurable impacts are clear as well: obesity and the risk of diabetes is directly related to lack of walkability; the number of car crash deaths is around 12 deaths per 100,000 in the USA compared to 3 in Japan and in walkable cities such as New York and San Francisco (both of which have made great strides in promoting cycling and car free areas and by pricing parking by demand).
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