San Francisco was recently voted one of the top 10 most walkable cities in the United States. That’s something you might not ever notice if you routinely make your daily commute via car, cab, or Uber. Sure, if you’re a passenger you can spend that time obsessively checking your social media on your phone, napping, or just staring off into space waiting for that morning cup of coffee to kickstart your brain, but do you even know what you’re missing out on? Below you’ll find the top 10 reasons to walk to work in San Francisco and hopefully find at least one to break you out of that comfort zone that’s keeping you cooped up in cars.
1) A Healthier You
Walking can burn up to 200 calories per hour. In addition it helps build muscle mass which burns even more calories even while you’re at rest. Walking can also improve cardiovascular function which has a host of benefits including improved mental performance and increased endurance.
2) The Sights You’ll See
San Francisco is filled with hidden gems that you’ll never find if you spend your days stuck inside a moving metal box. Hit the bricks and uncover your new favorite coffee shop, book store, or boutique. As a pedestrian in San Francisco, you can come across some new favorites.
3) People Watching is Fun!
Along with the sights and sounds you’ll discover you’ll also spy thousands of unique individuals along your daily commute. From mustachioed hipsters whizzing by on their fixies to the goggle-eyed tourists eyeing Google Maps on their phones, San Francisco is full of free entertainment!
4) Kinesthetic Breakthroughs
Sir Ken Robinson is a vocal advocate of breaking the mold concerning intelligence. He believes (as many others do) that we all have varying forms of “intelligence” including the kinesthetic brand—the intelligence of motion. Basically some of us think better, solve problems easier, come up with new ideas quicker when we’re moving And you may be one . . . but you’ll never find out from the back seat of an Uber car.
Cars produce tremendous amount of greenhouse gasses such as carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide. The average automobile on San Francisco streets produces 4.7 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year. Even if you walk to work every other day you can cut that figure by half!
6) It Saves You Money
The average commute time in San Francisco is 30 minutes. The average mileage on passengers cares in the US is 30 MPG. That means that your daily commute uses roughly 1.3 gallons of gas or $3.00 per day. You could be saving a whopping $780 per year by hoofing it to work!
7) It (Could) Save You Time
How often have you hopped into the car thinking you’re drive is going to take just a couple of minutes but then get stuck behind slow traffic, in construction, or chasing down parking spots? For some people—as crazy as it sounds—walking could actually be quicker!
8) No Parking!
Parking in certain San Francisco neighborhoods can be apocalyptic at the best of times. NerdWallet ranked San Francisco as one of the top 10 worst cities in the whole country for parking. Some of the worst neighborhoods include SoMa, South Beach, the Mission and the Financial District. Your sneakers don’t need a parking spot.
9) Walking is “Socially Responsible” (A.K.A. “Hip”)
Years ago driving was a status symbol (“see me in my fancy car?”) Nowadays it’s just the opposite. Walking has actually become a trendy way to get to and from wherever you’re going. So join the “in crowd” and lace up those sneaks.
10) It Helps with Depression (Seriously)
One study from 1999 showed that walking had similar effects to prescription Prozac (pedestrian = Prozac! Haha.) but those effects actually lasted longer than the pills! I’m not saying walking is a replacement for treatment of depression but it has been shown to improve mood. Why not talk it over with your doctor?
Walk San Francisco Safely
As much as I love walking through the City, as a San Francisco pedestrian accident attorney I know the streets can be dangerous for those of us who prefer to travel on foot. It’s up to us, the pedestrians, to watch out for ourselves and be aware of our surroundings. But don’t let that keep you trapped inside an automobile.
With a little presence of mind and a sense of wonder you can turn your daily commute to work into an everyday adventure.
If you or someone you love has suffered major injuries after being hit by a car, get a FREE online case evaluation now from our 5-star rated pedestrian accident team.