What was it in America that we lived in before World War II but then abandoned post-war for an auto-driven lifestyle and are now, increasingly and rather quietly (Shhhh) returning to in growing numbers?
We could call it a pedestrian-oriented infrastructure or we could speak English and simply say WALKABLE NEIGHBORHOODS!
It’s not a new concept by any means. It’s just something we all but abandoned in favor of Eisenhower’s federal highway system in the ‘50’s and the practice of commuting to and from work, school, shopping, you name it. Well, just how much fun has that become lately, that sitting in traffic? No wonder there’s a growing trend toward moving back. No wonder people want to buy in walkable communities.
Take a look around. Increasingly there’s a demand for Tacoma’s Proctor District (Highly walkable). The Lincoln District, look at what’s happening in that ethnic oasis! All the new development happening on the waterfront down in the Ruston area – Walkability! And just take a stroll down Bridgeport Way in University Place, home of the new Town Center with a Whole Foods on the North end of it and Trader Joe’s toward it’s south end. People don’t just want to walk. They want to walk someplace interesting. How else can you account for the popularity of University Place’s miles and miles of trails in and around the Chamber’s Bay complex with its parks, world class golf course, the Playground by the Sound and a view to die for! Even with its challenging hills, Chambers Bay is mighty walkable.
Perhaps they raised their families with a quarter acre of fescue out back, Rhodys and Begonias out front. Now the need for all that dirt to maintain doesn’t seem so driving when it’s driving they have to do just to get to their source for fertilizer, mulch and Moss Out! Increasingly, REALTORS are hearing, Give me a place where I can live affordably. I don’t need five bedrooms and a three-car but I would like to be able to walk to shopping, the library, a movie, a meal…heck, a choice of meals!
REALTORS across America are working to improve and increase such changes through Smart Growth initiatives. You’ll find REALTORS working with state legislators, county council members and city staff, working to help homebuyers reconnect with that sense of touchable, interesting, walkable communities. How do we recapture them? It’s in how we decide to develop and build. REALTORS are right in the middle of that. Not necessarily real estate licensees, real estate brokers, real estate agents but REALTORS are. Yes, there is a very real difference. Ask any Coldwell Banker Bain Associate. Why? Because we’re involved in our communities and their futures for our families and yours. Wonderfully walkable and desirable communities come about through the efforts of many and right in the middle of those efforts are the REALTORS and oh, by the way, here at Coldwell Banker Bain, we are all REALTORS.
Give us a call at Coldwell Banker Bain (Tacoma 253-752-7777 or Puyallup 253-841-9100). We’ll be happy to help you find your next home in exactly the kind of community that works for you!
Article by Pat Maddock, REALTOR®