From Doggerel – innovation in the built environment |
An interdisciplinary research team at Arup has spent the last six months exploring this question. The resulting publication, Cities Alive: Towards a Walking World, looks at 80 case studies around the world, identifying 50 benefits of increasing the walkability of cities and 40 actions that could be taken right now to help us reach this goal.
Perhaps most importantly, it describes 50 “drivers of change” — reasons that making cities more walkable should and could happen today. “There are the demographic factors, such as aging populations and shrinking families, leading to an increasing need for social experience to avoid isolation and social exclusion,” said Demetrio Scopelliti, an architect at Arup’s Milan office and the project’s lead researcher. “There’s the fact that young people care more about the latest smartphone technology than the latest car. There’s increasing concern for the environment and increasing awareness that walking can improve physical and mental health. These issues are coming together to pull us towards walkability.”