MSNBC.com just reported on the 25 most walkable cities in the U.S. Provo is not on the list.
But the cities that do show up provide useful lessons. Though expected places like New York and Boston show up, so do cities from New Jersey such as Paterson and Newark. These cities also have become more walkable in recent years, the article notes, through walking initiatives, walking tours, and other efforts. Those are relatively easy things that Provo could deploy to enhance walkability in the short-term.
And that matters. The video below points out that people living in cities would be healthier if the cities themselves were simply designed to encourage more walking and physical activity. Specifically, it stresses the need for high density, mix-used development in order to make it possible for people to live, work, and shop in the same area — without driving.
The discussion about healthy living — and specifically about obesity — seems to often vacillate between unhealthy food and unhealthy lifestyle choices. In other words, health problems are usually either blamed on unhealthy people themselves, or the companies selling them unhealthy products.
But this video introduces the growing consensus that people living in a city that discourages physical activity have a really hard time staying healthy.