The Walkability Index is a tool that allows existing places to be benchmarked and new proposals to be objectively tested in terms of whether they deliver car-dependence, with its associated problems – or walkability, with the social, economic and environmental benefits found in walkable places.
The location of everyday land uses – shops, offices, schools and healthcare facilities – has important effects on our movement choices: whether we reach them by walking or cycling, catching a bus or going by private car.
Sometimes there is no choice: low density, monofunctional housing estates create car dependence. This is not only harmful for the environment but damaging to our mental and physical health. Car-dependency influences obesity and loneliness. In contrast, walkable places are healthy and sociable places.