• What is a Walk Score?
  • Canadian cities that are pedestrian-friendly
  • Transit Score and Bike Score

Founded in 2007, Walk Score is a company on a mission to score the walkability of a city for pedestrians between 0 and 100—otherwise known as the Walk Score. This score is very useful for future property owners or renters that do not own a car; it enables them to quickly pinpoint ideal areas to live where they can shop or take part in activities every day on foot, whether it’s for groceries, dry cleaning, the drugstore, banking, restaurants and parks.

The closer a property is located to essential services in a city, the higher its Walk Score is. When a city gets a score over 90, it means that it is a true paradise for pedestrians! A score between 70 and 89 means that most errands can be done by foot. A score of between 50 and 69 means only some errands can be done by foot. A score of below 50 means that people are required to use their cars.

An urban concept

The Walk Score is perfect for finding your dream neighbourhood and getting rid of your car. In Canada, Vancouver is the metropolitan center that has the highest Walk Score of 78. Montréal comes in third with 70.4. However, it’s important to remember that neighbourhoods within a city vary from one to the next; the Plateau Mont-Royal scores impressively at 93!

On the other hand, Laval has a score of 47, because most errands need to be done with a car. Québec City hovers at 49. In 2016, the US winner will come has no shock to anyone: New York City. It has a score of 88.9. Out of all the cities evaluated in Canada and the United States, Montréal ranks 14th with its overall score of 70. Not too bad!

It’s all about health

Founders Mike Mathieu and Matt Lerner came up with the idea of creating Walk Score, because they wanted to promote pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods in Canada, the US and Australia. Their belief: walkable neighborhoods have a profoundly transformative impact on people’s health, the environment, and citizens’ household budgets. 

Future property owners and renters now have another variable they can take into account when looking for a house or apartment. For people that don’t want to buy a car, the Walk Score is an indispensable and decisive metric used when searching for a new home..

Transit Score and Bike Score

The company has also developed a Transit Score, which enables people to analyze the accessibility a given area has to public transportation. For example, the Plateau Mont-Royal has a Transit Score of 97 thanks to how close it is located to metro stations and bus routes. Québec City has a score of 46 due to its lack of underground public transport. Again, New York scores first in the US with 84, followed by San Francisco with a score of 80.

Do you love commuting by bike and want to live in the most beautiful city for cyclists? Minneapolis, with 382 000 inhabitants, is ready to welcome you with a Bike Score of 81.3. Bike scores take into account reserved bike lanes, hills and how well various bike paths connect together. However, no city is perfect; Minneapolis has a Walk Score of only 68.

Key takeaways

  • A Walk Score enables you to evaluate how easy it is to run errands in a neighborhood.
  • The Plateau Mont-Royal has the highest Walk Score in the province of Québec.
  • The Walk Score is an efficient tool for people wanting to live in the city and not buy a car.
  • The Transit Score and Bike Score are very useful to determine a neighborhood’s proximity to public transportation and bike paths.