Walk Score has placed Victoria’s walkability factor at 77.7, making it the third most walkable city in Canada, just behind Vancouver (78.0) and Montreal enclave Westmount, Que., (79.3).
Vancouver was ranked No. 1 out of the 10 largest cities in Canada. It was followed by Toronto, 71; Montreal, 70; Mississauga, 59; Ottawa, 54; Winnipeg, 53; Edmonton, 51; Hamilton, 51; and Brampton, Ont., and Calgary tied at 48.
According to Walk Score’s website, the group is governed by an advisory board that includes environmental, technical and planning experts from institutions including the Sightline Institute and the Brookings Institution.
Any city’s score is a measure of how easy it is to use an automobile less often, or not at all. It does not consider climate, crime or how pleasant the streets are. Instead, the score is derived from using a computer algorithm taking into account factors such as length of city blocks, distance from transit stops, amenities, population and density.
That means that Saanich’s score of 51 is equal to that of Edmonton — despite the differences in climate.
Oak Bay, 61, and Esquimalt, 65, fare a little better. Colwood, 42, Langford, 48, and Metchosin, 30, are all ranked as “car dependent.”
Maggie Kerr-Southin, spokeswoman for the Victoria Real Estate Board, said the ability to live without a car and use transit or walk is becoming a selling feature of homes for many.
“Depending on where you are in your life, you want to know if you can walk to do your shopping, or can I walk my kids to school,” Kerr-Southin said.
To see the list of ranked cities and neighbourhoods, go to walkscore.com/ rankings/canada.
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