Walk-ability Score – What is it and why do I need one?
I get a lot of questions about the “Walkability Score” section of property details on my search site www.searchsaltlakehomes.com, so thought I would give you a cool and efficient explanation of said component.
Walk Score is a company which “analyzes hundreds of walking routes to nearby amenities..these people just lovvve to walk. Points are awarded based on the distance to amenities in each category, the walk-ability of each amenity. Amenities within a 5 minute walk (.25 miles) are given maximum points. A decay function is used to give points to more distant amenities, with no points given after a 30 minute walk.” Insert here…I would give negative points and so would my feet if there was more than a 30 minute walk.
Additionally, Walk Score in it’s walk-ability assessment looks at pedestrian friendliness, a component which takes into account population density, block length, and intersection density. (Source: http://www.walkscore.com/methodology.shtml).
Walk-ability Score Rankings
Rankings are based on a 0 – 100 scale. Here’s how the scores translate to an area’s walkability:
- 90 – 100: Walker’s Paradise. Daily errands do not require a car.
- 70 – 89: Very Walkable. Most errands can be accomplished on foot.
- 50 – 69: Somewhat Walkable. Some errands can be accomplished on foot.
- 25 – 49: Car-Dependent. Most errands require a car.
- 0 – 24: Car-Dependent. Almost all errands require a car.
In addition to a Walk-ability Score, Walk Score also evaluates for Transit Score (how well a location is served by public transit) and Bike Score (whether an area is good for biking).
So what does this Walk-ability Score mean to you? Well, my Padawan learners, all three of these scores can help you determine your personal values when you’re buying a home. They can also be useful to profile the kind of buyer who might be interested in a home you’re selling. It’s important to understand that a high or low walk-ability score is not necessarily bad. It all depends on personal values. (Someone who wouldn’t walk to errands anyway might find themselves bothered by the proximity to a highly-trafficked commercial businesses, for example.)
So, what do you do with all this newly gained knowledge? If you’re curious about your own home’s walk-ability score, or you’d like to learn about the most and least walkable neighborhoods in a given city, you can check out addresses on the Walk Score website at http://www.walkscore.com/.