VERY “Walkable”…but is it SAFE to walk there?

walkscoreI am very happy to report yesterday’s news that WalkScore has added a crime overlay, something I have been asking for since WalkScore first came about.

Local residents often roll their eyes when they see an awesome walk score attached to an area where it is simply not very safe to walk after dark AT ALL. Not a big problem for local residents, but what about the many people relocating to The Seattle Area who are relying on various internet tools to guide them in their search for a home in their new City?

I have not tried the new tool out extensively, but from what I have seen the crime grade does NOT reduce the walk SCORE, so a previous score of 87 will still be a score of 87. BUT if you take the time to study the color coded crime map after viewing the score, you will be better able to judge an area now than ever before. Previous to this change I have always recommended that people use to pull the crime data and photos of local registered sex offenders. Not sure if the changes to walk score will replace that need or not, but I am very happy to see that they are finally acknowledging that some very “walkable” neighborhoods as to their scoring…are in reality sometimes not very safe to walk in at all.

Try it out, as I will, and let me know what you think.

5 thoughts on “VERY “Walkable”…but is it SAFE to walk there?

  1. Wow, I never realized that the walk score does not factor in crime. That should be a huge consideration. Sure, if you live downtown Detroit you can walk to everything but will you feel safe? I doubt it. Let’s hope they figure out some new formula to incorporate crime statistics into their score.

  2. Simon, it would appear the announcement by WalkScore is a bit premature as I can’t pull any relevant data and am still using I doubt they will ever integrate crime into the actual walk score, but hopefully they will highlight the need to apply the crime map. At the moment the color coding on their map appears to a be value related heat map and I have yet to be able to pull up the crime map noted in their announcement. They say at present it only works for apartments and you have to call or email to get info for a house. Easier just to use homefacts for the crime info as I have always recommended.

    In my daily business it rarely comes up because I know the areas, but it is useful for people considering a job transfer to an area they are not familiar with.

  3. I think it is really a must to know the crime rate in an area, not just by looking at it’s walk score, most specially when you are newly relocated. It’s good to keep cautions sometimes. Thanks for sharing this.

  4. Great idea to add a crime function to Walking Score. I’m glad I jumped on your blog, I didn’t know that RedFin bought WalkScore. Next acquisition may be the new app SchoolScout.

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