Cities designed for people, not cars. A significant and often overlooked climate solution is rooted in improving walking infrastructure in cities.
Cities designed for people, not cars.
This might seem like the obvious infrastructure solution, but up until recently the opposite has been our country’s reality.
A significant and often overlooked climate solution is rooted in improving walking infrastructure in cities. When walking as transportation is prioritized in city design and planning, we can maximize walking, minimize driving, and ultimately reduce emissions.
The 15-Minute City is the latest big buzz surrounding walkability. Forbes defines this as “In its simplest form the 15-minute city is designed to make everything someone needs accessible in 15 minutes or less. If you de-emphasize the need for highway travel and long commutes there are both mental health and environmental benefits.”
According to Project Drawdown, as cities become denser and city planners, commercial enterprises, and residents invest in walkability, 5 percent of urban mobility can be provided by foot instead of car by 2050. That shift could result in 2.83–3.51 gigatons of carbon dioxide equivalent greenhouse gas emissions and reduce costs associated with car ownership by US$3.18–3.94 trillion.
According to Congress for the New Urbanism, walkable cities:
- Reduce GHG emissions
- Improve urban microclimates
- Minimize land usage
- Reduce air pollution
- Improve water management
- Promote alternative transportation
- Beautify cities
- Increase use of space
- Cut ambient noise
Companies and organizations like Culdesac, Gehl, Strong Towns, Congress for New Urbanism, Project for Public Spaces, and Opticos Design, Inc. are helping people ditch their keys and lace up their shoes!
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