San Marco: A Walking Oasis in an Unwalkable CityOctober 28, 2008 11 comments Print Article
Almost every city has walkable neighborhoods where it's possible to live a car-lite lifestyle.
Picture a walkable neighborhood. You lose weight each time you walk to the grocery store. You stumble home from last call without waiting for a cab. You spend less money on your car - or you don't own a car. When you shop, you support your local economy. You talk to your neighbors.
What makes a neighborhood walkable?
A center: Walkable neighborhoods have a discernible center, whether it's a shopping district, a main street, or a public space.
Density: The neighborhood is compact enough for local businesses to flourish and for public transportation to run frequently.
Mixed income, mixed use: Housing is provided for everyone who works in the neighborhood: young and old, singles and families, rich and poor. Businesses and residences are located near each other.
Parks and public space: There are plenty of public places to gather and play.
Pedestrian-centric design: Buildings are placed close to the street to cater to foot traffic, with parking lots relegated to the back.
Nearby schools and workplaces: Schools and workplaces are close enough that most residents can walk from their homes.
San Marco, Jacksonville, Florida - Walk Score 80
Although Jacksonville is ranked #40 out of 40 with a Walk Score of only 36, San Marco, Jacksonville's second most walkable neighborhood, has a Walk Score of 80.
Based on the Piazza di San Marco in Venice, Italy, San Marco's short blocks and pedestrian-oriented design make it very walkable.
Photos by Ennis Davis