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Physical Activity

Walkable Communities

Did you know?

Each year the average Canadian makes 2,000 car trips of less than three kilometers in length - trips that could easily be made on foot or by bicycle. A walkable community is needed to support this.

What Is A Walkable Community?

A walkable community is a well-designed, compact community, where common daily destinations such as schools, stores, services and places to work and play are located within a convenient and reasonable walking distance. A walkable community supports active transportation - making it easy for people to choose walking more often and rely less on cars.

Why are Walkable Communities important?

Communities that support walking as a primary mode of transportation provide health, environmental, safety, social and economic benefits to individuals and the community as a whole. Walkable communities contribute to quality of life, and can be part of a sustainable community solution.

What makes people want to walk?

Factors that make people want to walk include a great walking experience, safety, accessibility, connections, comfort, walkable destinations, and encouragement.  Find out what makes communities great places to walk from Canada Walks.

How do communities become more walkable?

(VIDEO) Walkable 101: The Basics to learn how your community can become better connected, more prosperous, more sustainable and healthier through streets that support active living.

Walkability Checklists

Use one of the following checklists to assess the walkability of your neighbourhood/community.  Share your findings with others and look for ways to discuss walkability challenges with your mayor and municipal council. 

(PDF) WalkON

International Charter for Walking

Some local communities have signed the International Charter for Walking.  The Charter identifies the needs of people on foot and provides a common framework to help authorities refocus their existing policies, activities and relationships to create a culture where people choose to walk.

Under each strategic principle, the actions listed provide a practical list of improvements that can be made in most communities. 

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