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Old 03-31-2018, 01:58 PM
 
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Being European and visiting the USA I was always surprised how different it is to European cities in terms of walkability.
American cities are basically made for cars.
I guess the best city for pedestrians in the USA wis NYC oand the worst is a place with a lot of urban sprawl like LA of Phoenix.
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Old 03-31-2018, 06:32 PM
 
1,987 posts, read 1,237,690 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveStavroz View Post
Being European and visiting the USA I was always surprised how different it is to European cities in terms of walkability.
American cities are basically made for cars.
I guess the best city for pedestrians in the USA wis NYC oand the worst is a place with a lot of urban sprawl like LA of Phoenix.
Phoenix and Orlando are the absolute worst for pedestrians. And while LA is not like NYC or even Chicago, it's far more pedestrian friendly than a place like Phoenix.
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Old 03-31-2018, 07:49 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
2,921 posts, read 3,635,848 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DTXman34 View Post
Phoenix and Orlando are the absolute worst for pedestrians. And while LA is not like NYC or even Chicago, it's far more pedestrian friendly than a place like Phoenix.
Several cities in Florida are extremely pedestrian unfriendly. Busy streets/roads with traffic lights miles apart and nowhere to cross in between. Phoenix can be like that as well but at least cars will allow pedestrians to cross at lights. I once had to cross a major street in Florida at a traffic light to get to a restaurant opposite my hotel. There was a traffic light but no crosswalk so I waited and tried to cross on a green light. Cars literally drove around me while I walked across the street. I had to ask a coworker for a 200 foot long ride back to our hotel after dinner because it felt so unsafe and was by then dark. I have never experienced anything like that in LA, even in distant suburbs. I think that was Orlando but it’s been years. It may have been Tampa.
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Old 03-31-2018, 09:53 PM
 
Location: DFW
6,800 posts, read 11,772,651 times
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Worst city: Midland, Texas.

I've been honked at countless times for exercising my legal right to cross the street, sometimes even when there was a clear walk signal.
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Old 03-31-2018, 10:07 PM
 
Location: South Park, San Diego
4,940 posts, read 7,596,851 times
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Your typical sunbelt sprawling suburban cities in Florida and Texas are going to be much worse than L.A. as far as pedestrian access and, surprisingly, culture are concerned. We go to L.A. often and sometimes never even get in a car and feel very comfortable as we walk all over the city. Walking from the train station through Little Tokyo to downtown and our hotel room and take the subway, light rail and bus to other areas to walk and explore.

It’s a PITA to be in a car in L.A. but like most real cities it’s not too bad if you can avoid that by taking transit and walking (or ride share) - not easy mind you, but not bad and better than being stuck in traffic.
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Old 04-01-2018, 06:51 AM
 
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Best cities for pedestrians are often the ones with good high-road economies — high value firms doing challenging work — vs cities built around entertainment or tourism or leisure or low-road manufacturing (which has moved offshore leaving those cities to decay.) New York, Boston, San Francisco, Seattle. These are also the cities with runaway housing costs. Other good walking cities include Washington, Chicago and Philadelphia. I think density and walkability that enables proximity and opportunities for interaction and cooperation is a huge economic advantage in today’s economy.
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Old 04-01-2018, 07:06 AM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
17,248 posts, read 19,545,740 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveStavroz View Post
Being European and visiting the USA I was always surprised how different it is to European cities in terms of walkability.
American cities are basically made for cars.
I guess the best city for pedestrians in the USA wis NYC oand the worst is a place with a lot of urban sprawl like LA of Phoenix.
New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, San Francisco and Washington DC are the best cities in the U.S. for pedestrians.

Many other cities have smaller or disconnected areas that are good for pedestrians.
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Old 04-01-2018, 08:13 AM
 
Location: Boston Metrowest (via the Philly area)
4,458 posts, read 7,523,622 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by missionhill View Post
Best cities for pedestrians are often the ones with good high-road economies — high value firms doing challenging work — vs cities built around entertainment or tourism or leisure or low-road manufacturing (which has moved offshore leaving those cities to decay.) New York, Boston, San Francisco, Seattle. These are also the cities with runaway housing costs. Other good walking cities include Washington, Chicago and Philadelphia. I think density and walkability that enables proximity and opportunities for interaction and cooperation is a huge economic advantage in today’s economy.
Good list, although Philadelphia, DC, Miami and Chicago really belong in the "best" tier according to Walk Score. I'd also argue that your assertion about "high value" versus "low road" economies is a corollary of walkability, not necessarily a cause of it. A distinct difference in my book.

Walkability is most predicated upon the history of the built environment (i.e., how much of it predated the mass consumption of automobiles) and population density.

Seattle and Miami both are interesting "in between" cases (certainly a very strong and continuously strengthening urban cores that are solidly above all other large US cities but not quite as "well-rounded" as the "Big 6" (NYC, SF, Boston, Philly, Chicago and DC), which are the quintessential traditionally-urban big cities.

Last edited by Duderino; 04-01-2018 at 08:40 AM..
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Old 04-01-2018, 10:49 AM
 
Location: Yakima WA
4,403 posts, read 4,608,580 times
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I once read an official study on this subject and I remember Florida cities dominated the list of worst for pedestrians.
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Old 04-01-2018, 10:56 AM
 
Location: Greenville SC 'Waterfall City'
7,583 posts, read 4,003,555 times
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Greenville SC is great for pedestrians. Some people say it is similar to an European city.
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