Is Atlanta Taking Advantage Of Its Walkable Areas?

[BLOG}: Curbed Atlanta has a good run down of the changes in Atlanta’s neighborhood WalkScore rankings over the last couple of years – read it here.

I don’t mean to brag, I don’t mean to boast…but three of the top five most walkable areas of the city, according to the ranking system, are part of Downtown. The areas are: GSU, Peachtree Center and SoNo.

tumblr_inline_nrsgb8Kbg61qbg499_500

We need to take all of this with a large grain of salt because WalkScore rankings are significantly flawed. They’re based on criteria that does not include reports of the actual experience of walking the streets of these neighborhoods. You can only judge walkability so well from electronically collected data; real experience matters.

The SoNo district (see a map here), which is “South of North Avenue,” shows the difficulty of WalkScore’s methods. It is certainly easy to walk through here, and there are some key destinations and services – Shakespeare Tavern, Gladys Knights & Ron’s Chicken and Waffles, Emory Midtown hospital, Peachtree-Pine shelter, some apartments and the Bank of America tower. But a quick look at a Google map (along with my own many experiences passing through on foot) shows that a lot of the district’s land use is made up of parking facilities, empty lots, abandoned buildings and interstate infrastructure. It’s a place that needs some added development before I would recommend a visitor take a stroll there.

Read full article here.