Monday, January 18, 2010

Score One for Walkable Urbanism

The New York Times recently reported on a study recently commissioned by the group, CEOs for Cities. Entitled "Walking the Walk: How Walkability Raises Home Values in US Cities" author Joe Cortright concludes that:
"More than just a pleasant amenity, the walkability of cities translates directly into increases in home values. Homes located in more walkable neighborhoods—those with a mix of common daily shopping and social destinations within a short distance—command a price premium over otherwise similar homes in less walkable areas. Houses with the above-average levels of walkability command a premium of about $4,000 to $34,000 over houses with just average levels of walkability in the typical metropolitan areas studied."
The study correlated housing values using's results as a basis for walkability. While still not a perfect calculation as it doesn't yet have enough data to determine the presence of a sidewalk, Walkscore measures the proximity to amenities such as schools, public buildings, and shops that are essential for daily living. The next study I'd love to see is how this data correlates to home foreclosures. I suspect that these walkable neighborhoods would fare equally as well. Just a hunch.

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