SEATTLE, WA - Walk Score, a Redfin company, released its 2016 ranking of the most walkable U.S. cities with populations over 300,000. With a Walk Score of 88.9, New York remains the nation’s most walkable city.
Long Beach, California (69) is the only Southern California city included in the top 10, narrowly beating out Baltimore (68.7). Long Beach also had the largest yearly increase of all 10 cities, up 3.2 points.
“Recognizing Long Beach as the most walkable city in Southern California, and one of the most walkable in the entire country, is a testament to the hard work we’ve been doing to improve and expand pedestrian infrastructure and support safe and convenient travel for everyone,” said Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia. “We intend to continue making Long Beach a great place to walk and to live, work and visit.”
Notable Improvements in Walkability:
All of the top 10 cities saw an increase in their respective Walk Score ratings, indicating that the nation’s largest cities are becoming more walkable. Among the top 50 most walkable cities, only two, Honolulu (63.3) and Columbus, Ohio (40.4) had Walk Scores that improved by less than a point.
“Improving a city’s Walk Score takes work. In these communities, construction crews have built an invitation for walking,” said Eric Scharnhorst, livability analyst at Redfin. “Safer sidewalks are now connected to a greater variety of everyday amenities. This creates opportunities for both local businesses and families.”
Omaha, which ranked 32nd, had the largest year-over-year Walk Score increase among the 50 most walkable cities, with an improvement of 4.3 points. With a Walk Score of 45.4, the city is still considered “car dependent,” but many neighborhoods saw big gains in their ratings.
St. Louis, Missouri, Denver, Colorado, Aurora, Colorado, Santa Ana, California as well as Austin and Houston in Texas all saw a Walk Score increase of four points or more.