Walk Score was launched in 2007 with a core goal, according to CTO Matt Lerner, of answering the question, “How do we make walkability and transit and commuting part of how people decide where to live?”(1)
The company helps people identify neighborhoods in select cities based on their “walkability score,” a metric the company has created to track factors such as access to transit and shopping, availability of infrastructure like sidewalks, and crime rate. The score is a number between 0 and 100, with low score indicating car dependence, and high scores indicating walkability. It also provides transit scores and bike scores.
Walk Score has a consumer-oriented website that targets young urban professionals looking for places to live in one of the cities it covers. In addition to walkability, transit, and bike scores, the site offers extensive information about shopping and amenities in these cities. It also provides apartment listings that people can use to find a place to live.
The company also has “Walk Score Professional,” which provides data and information about its methodology to researchers, land use planners, and developers. Walk Score has become particularly popular in the real estate industry. Zillow, for example, lists Walk Scores for on its site. Overall, Walk Score delivers more than 10 million scores for apartment and home addresses per day across a network of more than 30,000 real estate sites.
Currently, Walk Score has data on 141 cities with populations higher than 200,000 in the United States, Canada, and Australia.
Walk Score has an ambitious agenda of providing information and tools that will encourage planners, developers, and consumers to create communities that allow us to eschew car dependence in favor of a more human scale.
You can learn more about Walk Score by visiting its website at www.walkscore.com.
(1) Quote from “What’s Your Walk Score? The Company that Puts a Number on Walkability.” Tom Vanderbilt, Slate, April 26, 2012.