Why Building Walkable Cities is the Key to Economic Success

    New report Foot Traffic Ahead finds walkable urbanism isn’t just sustainable and enjoyable, but more profitable

    What if I told you there was a way to develop U.S. cities that was better for social equity, created more jobs and economic activity, resulted in better transit access, and improved the environment, all while guaranteeing better economic returns for developers and investors?

    According to “Foot Traffic Ahead,” a new report that provides an in-depth look at the impact of walkable urbanism on U.S. real estate, that method exists. On nearly every metric, walkable developments perform better for their citizens, especially economically, which makes it that much more disappointing that so many established policy decisions fly in the face of this data.

    A joint project between The Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis (CREUA) at the George Washington University School of Business, Smart Growth America/LOCUS, Cushman & Wakefield, and Yardi Matrix, the report found substantial growth in such areas—defined via a formula that looks at office and retail density as well as Walk Score—as well as substantial value increases and increased educational attainment and economic vitality.

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