• How walk friendly were Wilmington, Dover and Newark 2 years ago?

    by  • April 3, 2011 • Bicycle Friendly Places • 2 Comments

    The U.S Census Bureau conducts a major census of the United States once every 10 years. In the intervening years, the Bureau conducts a much smaller survey – the American Community Survey – of 3 million households. ACS data provides more up-to-date (but less accurate) information about U.S. communities. Because of the relatively small sample size, the accuracy of ACS data can be a big issue. But, keeping this problem in mind, it is still interesting to use this data to give us some sense of how well Delaware’s largest communities were doing (as of the last available ACS survey) at making walking a safe and convenient transportation option. The most recent 3 year average ACS data (2006-2008) suggests, for example, that Newark was way out in front of other Delaware communities in this regard. While about 7% of work commuting trips in Wilmington were done by walking, and about 3% in Dover, ACS data indicates that in Newark more than 17% of all work commuting trips were done by walking in the 2006-2008 period. We can add some context to these numbers by comparing these Delaware communities to big cities:


    James Wilson is the executive director of Bike Delaware. He is a member of the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals (by whom he was named the 2014 Professional of the Year, Nonprofit Sector), the Institute of Transportation Engineers and the Delaware Bicycle Council. He serves on the board of directors of Delaware Greenways and the Delaware Valley Smart Growth Alliance and as the co-chair of the policy committee of the Advisory Council on Walkability and Pedestrian Awareness. He holds engineering degrees from Yale University and the University of Texas at Austin and is the only registered lobbyist for cycling and walking in Delaware. He helped create, and continues to lead Bike Delaware's participation in, the Walkable Bikeable Delaware campaign. During his tenure as Bike Delaware's executive director, Delaware advanced in the national Bicycle Friendly State rankings for five years in a row, farther and faster than any other state, ever.

    2 Responses to How walk friendly were Wilmington, Dover and Newark 2 years ago?

    1. John
      April 4, 2011 at 11:46 am

      A better comparison for Newark might be other small towns with large universities.

    2. James Wilson
      April 4, 2011 at 1:07 pm

      We'll do that in a follow-up post (for walking).

      We already did it for bicycling:


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