The most walkable streets in San Francisco aren’t always the ones with the most destinations within walking distance, according to a new walkability web-app. Several surprising streets and neighborhoods in San Francisco have been rated as ‘walkable’, when other factors of pedestrian-friendliness are taken into account: such as fear of crime, steepness of hills and crossing the street.
The Walkonomics web-app uses ‘Open Data’ and ‘Crowdsourcing’ to rate the pedestrian-friendliness of over 14,000 streets in San Francisco in the following categories:
- Road safety;
- Easy to cross;
- Sidewalk quality;
- Fear of crime;
- Smart & beautiful;
- Fun & relaxing.
Data on pedestrian accidents, crime, 311 reports, gradients and street cleanliness have all been used to calculate the scores. The process even included counting the number of trees on every street in San Francisco! This analysis is combined into an overall 5 star rating and plotted on a Google map using colour-coded markers.
The Walkonomics data for San Francisco reveals some interesting facts about the cities walkability. The cities most walkable streets include many of its Paseos (pedestrian only streets) that aren’t right in the city centre:
While the least walkable streets include wider roads with busy traffic:
The most walkable neighborhood is Presidio, closely followed by Golden Gate Park and Lake, these areas scored well because of their parks, trees and low crime levels, rather than just proximity to shops. The least walkable neighborhoods include Stonestown and Downtown Tenderloin which have busier traffic and higher crime rates, which deter people from walking.
San Francisco is famous for its steep hills and unsurprisingly the neighborhoods that scored worst for ‘Hilliness’, all have clues in their titles, including: Corona Heights, Buena Vista Park, Golden Gate Heights and Forest Knolls. While the flatter neighborhoods of Mission Bay, South of Market and Marina were all rated more walkable for hilliness.
When it comes to ‘Fear of Crime’, Downtown Tenderloin and South of Market had the worst crime statistics, while Presidio, Pine Lake Park and Sherwood Forest were rated safer from crime.
The Walkonomics rating of ‘Fun and Relaxing’ measures how relaxing it is to be in a street as well as the opportunity for fun and shopping. In this category several neighborhoods with parks gained the highest rating as well as North Waterfront and Downtown Tenderloin.
San Francisco residents can find out how walkable their own street is by searching Walkonomics.com and also add their own ratings and ideas for improvement.
This comes just weeks after the Brookings Institute published new research that shows that walkable streets add value to house prices and can boost retail sales by up to 80%.
For Top 10 lists of the most and least walkable neighborhoods in San Francisco see: https://walkonomics.com/blog/top-10-lists-of-the-most-and-least-walkable-neighborhoods-in-san-francisco/
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Screen shots from Walkonomics web-app: