The benefits of walking seem endless.
In addition to providing energy boost while improving heart, lungs, and muscle health, walking can also help reduce stress and stimulate cognitive processing. At the same time, walking (like biking or taking the T or carpooling) also plays a role in the City’s greenhouse gas emission reduction efforts. Started in 2009 with the Complete Streets Initiative, the City continues collaborating with partners and community organizations to incorporate smart, green, and multimodal principles as design standards for Boston’s streetscape. We’ve compiled resources here to help make your walking experience more enjoyable:
For those who are new in town, experience historic landmarks and popular points of interest around town using WalkBoston Maps! Created by the local people and walking enthusiasts who know the area best, you can select to view maps with detailed route, distances, and descriptions of sights and scenes in specific neighborhood and community.
Have you tried walking to work? Some of Boston-based organizations have offered transportation benefits to its employees, including incentives for walking to work. Local transportation management associations (TMAs) help employers offer free transportation benefits to their employees. Boston’s five TMAs are A Better City (ABC) TMA, Allston Brighton TMA, CommuteWorks/MASCO, Seaport TMA, and TranSCommm, each covering different geographic areas of the city. They provide programs like emergency/guaranteed rides home, incentives for walking or biking to work, and subsidies to try busing, carpooling, and vanpooling. Find out if your employer belongs to a TMA and take advantage of the benefits.
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) has also created the Safe Routes to School program to promote safer experience when using alternative modes of transportation. The program partners with local grade schools to promote healthy alternatives for children and parents in their travel to and from school. Learn about other MassDOT initiatives promoting pedestrian transportation.
If walking to work or school are not logistically ideal for you, take up walking in your free time! Check out some of Boston’s historical, cultural, sports, or public art walking tours as you rack up some steps.
What can you do to make your walk more enjoyable? Got ideas for Boston to become an even more pedestrian-friendly city? Do you have a favorite walking route in your neighborhood? Share your ideas and stories!