When you walk around the streets of Calgary you get caught up in the buzz surrounding the urban atmosphere. When you're at street level, there's an appeal to an area that just can't be seen from a car. This is one of the reasons why the walkability factor has turned into a major buying or selling feature for anyone that is looking for real estate or is selling a home.
This is a concept that was first made popular by walkscore.com. This website takes a look at the walkability of different areas across Canada and gives each one a ranking ranging from 0 to 100. This factor has become increasingly popular throughout the years and can now even affect your property value.
This walkability score is also now being taken into account by urban planning developers. In central Canada, the Ontario Professional Planners Institute has been working on a campaign to raise awareness about urban design and incorporating walkability into the planning.
The walkability factor takes into account the access that people have in their local communities and their ability to get around in them. Even something like street trees can make a difference to the comfort of walking through an area. Trees provide shade that is comforting and needed on hot, steamy summer days. A mother that is walking along as her son learns to drive his new tricycle will appreciate all the shade she can get as she's walking down the sidewalk.
When compared to the other large cities in Canada, Calgary is in 10th place as far as walkability goes. It was given a rating of 48/100 last year and the most walkable neighborhoods in the city are Cliff Bungalow, Chinatown and the commercial core downtown.