10 Economic Advantages of Human-Scale Cities & Towns

Over the last century, the automobile has largely influenced how localities (big and small) have planned for the future and embraced new growth and development. But, to truly develop sustainable, prosperous and attractive communities, walkability must remain at the forefront of policy, strategy and design. Human-scale cities and towns hold significant social, economic, environmental and political benefits, and opportunities to place people back at the heart of cities and towns need to be identified and evaluated on a regular basis to ensure quality of life.

In June 2016, Arup, a multinational engineering and design firm headquartered in London, England, published a fantastic research report, Cities Alive: Toward a Walking World, which enumerated 50 benefits of walkable places. Understanding it can prove difficult to know where to begin, the Congress for New Urbanism (CNU) recently pared the list down to 10 key benefits, focusing, specifically, on economic advantages. Learn more below:

10 Economic Advantages of Human-Scale Cities & Towns:

  • Boosts prosperity
  • Supports local businesses
  • Enhances creative thinking and productivity
  • Enhances a place’s identity
  • Promotes tourism
  • Encourages investment in cities and towns
  • Attracts the “creative class”
  • Increases land and property values
  • Activates street facades
  • Reduces motor vehicle and road costs

Click here to learn more about each of these benefits and here to view the full research report from Arup that highlights 50 benefits of walkability, includes 40 actions that community leaders can take and examines 80 international case studies!

Image Credit: Ramblers