Home Amenities: Floor Plan, Updates . . . ‘Walkability’

How “walkable” is any given neighborhood?

You can find out by going to http://www.walkscore.com/ and typing in an address.

The site, which covers 40 U.S. metro areas, generates a map of nearby services (restaurants, groceries, book stores, coffee shops, dry cleaning, etc.), and calculates both a “walkability” score (from 1-100) and an average for the surrounding city.

I tested it by entering three addresses: my current address, just southwest of Cedar Lake in Minneapolis; my former address in the Fulton neighborhood in Southwest Minneapolis; and Lake & Hennepin, the epicenter of Uptown — and easily the most “walkable” part of Minneapolis.

I thought the scores — 71, 50, and 98 — were generally accurate, though “50” for Fulton seemed on the low side (50th Street is full of great shops, local stores, etc.).

Not only is being able to walk to things a nice amenity, there’s increasing evidence that it correlates with higher property values (makes sense).

P.S.: Of course, “walkability” is at least partly subjective. My father-in-law takes long walks just feet away from Union Turnpike in Queens, where the cars go whizzing by at 50 mph-plus.

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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