Monday, July 3

One mile from home

Through a series of clicks that I don't now remember, I happened across this interesting post: Cascadia Scorecard Weblog: One Mile from Home. The author talks about going without a car in Seattle, and exploring the number of businesses available to him within a one mile of walking distance. He called the number he got--248 businesses-- his 'walkshed'. If you find this type of thing interesting, be sure to read the comments on this post too.

Now I am not a rabid environmentalist. I'm interested in this more as it relates to frugality than the environment. But I was fascinated with the idea. It was ridiculously easy for me to calculate my walkshed. I live out in the boondocks and there are exactly two businesses within a mile of me: a dairy and a VW repair shop. That's it.

There's lots of stuff farther out. I can get to Walmart in 10 minutes, and within 40 minutes we can access almost any chain store known to man. But my walkshed is '2'. Yikes. Add that to the fact that I drive a 15 passenger van half the time..well, we consume a fair bit 'o' gas! However, I almost always drive with at least half a dozen people in the car, something not everyone can say!

I'm wondering if anyone else would be interested in calculating their 'walkshed'? If you live out in the sticks like I do, you'll find it very simple. Just look around and count 'em up.

But people in bigger cities might prefer to use an internet tool to assist them. If you live in the 14 state range of Qwest you can go DexOnline.com:Yellow Pages - Online Phone Book here and search for your address. If you live in Canada, you'll find Canada411 helpful. And people in other areas of the US may be able to use SuperPages: Yellow Pages & White Pages.

If you find this interesting like I do, and decide to figure out your walkshed, tell me your score in comments, OK?

18 Comments:

At 12:59 PM, Blogger Beck said...

Oh, mine is easy too, because I also live in the boonies...so. Within easy walking distance I have:
- a small grocery store (where the store clerks gather around my baby and sneak my boy gum)
- a pharmacy
- a bus station/Sears depot
- a gift shop
- four convience stores
- a small hardware store
- a garage/gas station
- two restaurants
- two hairdressers
- and a chainsaw shop.
I think I may be forgetting something, but you can gather that I do not exactly live in a bustling metropolis.

 
At 1:07 PM, Blogger Valarie said...

I couldn't get the Dex search to work for me. I'm in a somewhat highly populated area, but I don't think there are quite 13,360,333 businesses within 1 mile of my address. I wonder what my "bikewithtrailershed" would be?

 
At 1:30 PM, Blogger Valarie said...

I did figure out the Qwest site (type "all" in business category field), but I think it's inaccurate. Qwest only lists businesses that advertise in Dex. For instance, the dentist office 0.65 miles from my home is located in the parking lot of a grocery store and next to a gas station. Only the dental office showed in the count. On a quick search of the grocery store by name- it isn't listed in Qwest Dex.

Even if it's not right on with the count, it was still fun to do. It's definitely an interesting point to consider.

 
At 1:50 PM, Anonymous Lauren said...

And see, once again, NYC trumps all as the best place in the world to live, since I have "too many to calculate." I'm jesting, of course, since the city's not for everyone, but as a life long non-driver, I love love love having hundreds of choices in walking distance and hundreds of thousands within subway distance. Amazing.

 
At 2:25 PM, Blogger Laurie said...

Oh, you all have me beat. I have no stores or businesses within one mile. The nearest is 3 miles away where there is a little cafe and a gas station. I fudge, a mile away is a house that just started a little truck garden. The nearest Wal-Mart for me is 40 minutes away. But I do have one 95 year old grandma, my mom and dad, one sister, one uncle, one aunt, a grand-aunt, two first cousins once removed and a second cousin within my mile radius. And of course my moved-out-of-house-son is also within that same mile radius.

 
At 2:41 PM, Anonymous abc momma said...

According to Dex, mine is 8. Half of those are dentists. There's so much growth in a business park in my area, that number is soon to sky-rocket.

 
At 2:54 PM, Blogger Huffs said...

I count--in my head, of course--within a mile:

14+ restuarants--all types, fast food, sit-down, and ethnic
5 grocery stores--two are ethnic
2 movie rental stores
3 day cares
1 elementary school
3 churches
3 hair salons
2 dance studios

We live in a subdivision along a MAJOR traffic artery. Everything is pretty close, provided you aren't driving during rush hours. We don't do a lot of walking due to the busy intersections, but my husband does ride his bike back and forth to his grad classes 2 miles away.

I often laugh at the fact that I can leave my home and be at 5 different SUPER WALMARTS within 20 minutes. 4 different Kroger's. 4 different Publix's. 7 different elementary schools...lots of people where we are!!!!

 
At 3:14 PM, Anonymous HolyMama! said...

'rabid environmentalist'?!?! love that phrase.

my score: 0

 
At 6:32 PM, Blogger Shash said...

Ok, I had a few conversions to do first... 1.7 kilometers is 1.056 miles but since Canada411 will only allow me to work with whole numbers.... I will go with 2 kilometers which is 1.24 miles. (are you yawning yet?!)

So in that "zone" it tells me there are 445 businesses. The first page (30) consist of homebased businesses, contractors working from home etc, then the list gets interesting. We're in a new subdivision which is smack between farm land and a Instrustrial Park (not the green one, the concrete kind).

The first store that I can go to where I don't have to be an 18 wheeler... is a pizza shop 1.6 klm away which is .994 miles away.

Wow, I'm further out here than I thought!!!

 
At 7:07 PM, Blogger Crystal Breeze said...

I would have to walk about 2 miles to get to the following:
-a post office
-1 gas stations
I would hae to walk another 3 miles to get to the following:
-Candor Central School
-Grocery Store
-Quilt Shop
-Fire House
-1 hair salon
-Antiques shop
-Auto Repair shop
-1 gas station
-post office
-library

 
At 7:47 PM, Blogger Carol said...

Zero. There are zero businesses within a mile of my house.

There are zero businesses within two miles of my house.

Within three miles, there are five businesses - a stove shop, a convenience store, a fireworks store (open two seasons per year) an automotive body shop that someone runs in their backyard and a used RV sales place. So, if I were to do all my commerce on foot, I can buy a wood stove, get my hail damage repaired, set of fireworks and haul a camper trailer with my newly repaired vehicle. All that within three miles of home.

Within 5 miles there is one small burg that has 3 gas station/convenience stores, a beauty shop, 2 pizza places, a Subway, a Sonic, a McDonald's a grocery store, and a few other miscellaneous things.

5 Miles. Along an interstate service road. That's what I'd have to walk - one way - to purchase a pound of hamburger meat. Oh! About 5 miles in the other direction is a Wal-Mart. I guess that puts me smack dab in the midst of civilization after all. LOL!

Folks in NYC walk everywhere, too - or take the subway.

 
At 8:13 PM, Blogger Chaos-Jamie said...

671

I knew it was a lot,but man. Of course I'm walking distance to Wal-Mart, Target AND a mineature horse farm.

 
At 10:06 PM, Blogger Ruth said...

Cool, so I live in the downtown core of our city. We walk alot...mostly to the park and community center. When I looked up 2 km's (I am in Canada) it came up with 2495. That includes home businesses too. But still, that is a huge walkshed!!

 
At 10:36 PM, Blogger Kim C. said...

1 mile: 0 businesses
2 miles: 0
3 miles: a police dog training facility
4 miles: just the dogs
5...6...7...8 miles: the dogs.
9 miles: Now we've reached "downtown." There's a gas station, post office, 2 creepy restaurants, and a few others.
I drive a 15 passenger van too, all the time, but you know what? I like living in the boonies. We have 17 relatives within a half mile. That's even better than WalMart!

 
At 6:54 AM, Anonymous Leatitia said...

Canada411 gives me 1109.
1109! (And for 1km, not mile)

Yellow Pages gives me 480. More more representative of reality.

And my own experience makes me think there's really about 50-75 businesses, max.

I love on the island of beautiful Montreal. In Ahunstic for the locals.

 
At 7:49 PM, Blogger Multi-taskingmom said...

Zippo for me in a 1, 2 or 3 mile radius...unless you count my chicken tractor in the backyard which houses 6 laying hens and provides us with 3 to 5 eggs a day :-).

4 miles away and we hit "town" with grocery stores, the post office and many other businesses. Though I do have to travel 30 miles to get to the nearest mall or BJs or Walmart or Sears.

 
At 10:10 AM, Blogger Solomon & Malachi said...

Yeah, we'll soon be giving up our nice, big number for a beautiful 0. Yep. We're not environmentalists, either. I look forward to chickens and goats and lots of space for my kids to roam. If that means having to drive 30 minutes to Dairy Queen, well, that's probably healthier anyhow.

 
At 8:20 PM, Blogger Karmyn R said...

Okay - I checked it out - my nearest "walkable" place is a small family owned greenhouse. Other than that - it is a 5 mile hike to the nearest gas station/grocery store. I'm not going to be walking there for any groceries. bummer....It is a 12 minute drive to shopping. There are pros and cons to living rural.

 

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