To get around in most American cities, you need a car.
But some metros are making their streets more walkable and creating easier ways for residents to bike or take public transit instead of driving. For example, the Miami neighbourhood of Wynwood recently transformed itself into a walkable district – complete with cafes, art galleries, and restaurants – by adding car-free zones. Last year, Boston announced a plan to become the most walkable city in the US by 2030 by making sure every home is within a 10-minute walk of a subway station or bus stop.
Walk Score, a company that analyses car-free efforts in urban areas, recently released its annual ranking of walkable US cities. The list compares metros with populations that range from 200,000 to 10 million, and measures how easily residents can accomplish errands on foot, by bike, or using public transit.
While it’s still difficult to live in most American cities without a vehicle, Walk Score’s metric clarifies which places may be the least car-dependent.
The top 15 cities are below:
15. Minneapolis, Minnesota
14. Baltimore, Maryland
13. Hialeah, Florida
12. Long Beach, California
11. Oakland, California
10. Seattle, Washington
9. Washington, DC
8. Chicago, Illinois
7. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
6. Miami, Florida
5. Newark, New Jersey
4. Boston, Massachusetts
3. San Francisco, California
2. Jersey City, New Jersey
1. New York, New York
Unsurprisingly, New York is the most walkable and public-transit-friendly city in the US.
The New York metro area has miles of bike lanes and a robust mass transportation system, including subways, buses, bike shares, and rail lines like Metro-North and the Long Island Railroad.
For that reason, many New Yorkers go their entire lives without buying a car.
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