Continue to create a true multimodal and mixed-use community with safe and quality access to community facilities, greenspace, employment, neighborhoods businesses, shopping, and entertainment.
Walkscore is a website that scores neighborhoods based on a formula that assesses a neighborhood’s walkability, bikeability, and multimodal service on a scale from 1 to 100. In reviewing local Lexington scores, some areas scored much higher in walk and bike scores than others. For example, Aylesford Place-Woodland Park has a walk score of 85 and a bike score of 90. Downtown has a walk score of 88 and a bike score of 83. Columbia Heights has a walk score of 85 with a bike score of 92. University of Kentucky's walk score is 80, and bike score was 89, and most errands can be accomplished on foot. These are examples of neighborhoods in Lexington that are very walkable.
However, overall Lexington received a Walk Score of 34, a Transit Score of 25, and a Bike Score of 44. These numbers indicate that the city is car-dependent and that most errands require a car. Though the website may have included the rural area, thereby skewing the results to the non-walkable side, it still indicates that there is plenty of room to improve in this area.
Walkability is important for many reasons. Walking to amenities, employment, etc. from home is good for the environment, public health, and personal budgets, also, a walkable communities drive real estate values higher. Studies also indicate that millennials want to be able to walk or bike to work, restaurants, and retail. According to Smart Growth America’s “Foot Traffic Ahead: 2016”, the most walkable urban metros are also the most socially equitable, since the better access to employment and lower transportation costs (no car expense) offset the higher costs of housing.
In addition to providing a walkable and bikeable environment, it is important to also increase the level of service for our transit operations. The best way to do this is to increase ridership and make land use decisions that put people near the areas that are most easily served by transit, and encourage transit-oriented development patterns along our major corridors. This will be studied through comprehensive corridor studies executed through a partnership between Long-Range Planning and the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) referenced elsewhere in this plan.