10 Most Convenient Cities in America
Neighborhood ranking site Walk Score says a convenient town should have a main street or public space at its center, enough people to keep public transit running frequently and a mix of housing and businesses, lots of parks and other spaces. It should also kick in some amenities designed around pedestrians, schools, workplaces and "complete streets" ( no cul-de-sacs) designed for pedestrians, cyclists and transit.
A city that's walkable and easily accessible by public transportation with jobs, schools, hospitals, groceries, entertainment and other amenities within striking distance tends to draw more interest from tenants and potential homebuyers. It's a big reason real estate firms such as Zillow(Z) and Trulia factor Walk Score's walking, biking and transit ratings into their listings.
We took a look at Walk Score's latest batch of ratings and used the average scores of the biggest cities featured on the site to find the most convenient cities in America. If you're living and working here, a car may be more of a luxury than a necessity:
10. Portland, Ore.
Walk Score: 66.3
Transit Score: 50
Bike Score: 70
This is a town so obsessed with alternative transportation that landlords consider bike storage as big of an amenity as closet space and even do away with the occasional indoor parking space to make more of it. The city's fringes can be a bit far-flung, but neighborhoods within the Free Rail Zone have it pretty sweet, with free streetcar transportation just about anywhere they want to go. The commuter rail and expanding MAX light rail lines do a lot of the heavy lifting as well, but pedals power a lot of Portland's everyday transportation.