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As more and more Americans become aware of the effects of climate change and worried about health, they are looking to buy homes in cities where public transportation and walking abound. In a recent survey by Walk Score, New York City came out as number 1 for having neighborhoods with high walkablility and was also listed at number one for available public transportation as well.
Walk Score is a website that crunched the numbers of 10 million addresses and billions of walking routes to neighborhood amenities to find cities that are the most walkable. The results were great news for Manhattanites, which features the best walkability of any city in the United States.
In addition, New York City also scored high in other categories, including “Transit Score.” The transit score refers to the availability of public transportation options and NYC is filled with them. From subways to buses and trains, NYC offers a variety of ways to get from point A to point B and stops along the way as well.
In fact, NYC is so walkable and offers such a variety of public transportation options that Census data shows that 57% of households don’t even own cars! Thanks to many neighborhoods having easy access to subways and shops and restaurants, many households don’t need one.
Within NYC, various boroughs and neighborhoods have been shown to be more walkable than others. Manhattan is the borough with the most walkable neighborhoods. And in Manhattan, the area near Battery Park was found to be the most walkable of any in the city.
Battery Park is at the southern tip of Manhattan, and faces New York Harbor. Nearby is the urban suburb known as Battery Park City, which is one of the only planned areas in Manhattan. Apartments in the neighborhood often include areas to plant gardens and the nearby financial center makes for an easy commute. There are also some of the city’s best examples of architecture and public art. Many points in the area offer stunning views of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and New Jersey. There are also plenty of places to stroll and just enjoy the day, including five public parks, gardens and plazas filled with bronze figures, as well as the promenade. Although it was built on a landfill, the area continues to grow and add shopping, stores and supermarkets as well as restaurants. While there aren’t as many of the spacious apartments found elsewhere in Manhattan, the apartments and condos do offer cozy comforts and exercise rooms.
Living in a walkable neighborhood translates to personal benefits as well. Neighborhoods that were deemed more walkable also had inhabitants that got more physical activity. A government study found that those that were physically active also burned more calories, enough in fact, to make a difference in impacting obesity rates.
Walking has been shown to have multiple benefits including helping to maintain a healthy weight as well as prevent health issues such as heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes and even alleviate a bad mood.