Along with many other people, I am growing in my social and environmental responsibility these days, and have been trying to personally make some appropriate lifestyle changes. We’ve all heard the call – avoid bottled water, use public transportation, buy fair trade products, bring your own reusable bag to use at the grocery store, etc. I also believe in the under-appreciated thrift store, but more thoughts on that later.
Here’s a new discovery of mine: Walk Score. This site calculates the walkability of an address by locating nearby stores, restaurants, schools, parks, etc. My house scored a respectable 83, which the site ranks as “Very Walkable: it is possible to get by without owning a car.” Within a 1-mile radius, I can walk to Ralph’s, Starbucks, Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, the movie theater, Rite Aid, various parks, tons of eateries, and lots of other places.
Obviously the real question is do I actually walk to these places? That might mean making conscious changes, such as forgoing Trader Joe’s (which I adore), and shopping at the nearby Superior instead. But if the benefits include better physical health, reduction in pollution, more interaction with my neighborhood, and stronger local businesses, then let’s walk!
What’s your Walk Score?