Kansas City ranks as “car-dependent” on Walk Score

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Who thinks it’s time for City Editor Travis to get new shoes? | Photo by KCtoday

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35. That’s what Kansas City scored out of 100 on Walk Score’s walkability meter, making it a “car-dependent” city. Basically, the average Kansas Citian needs a car to do “most errands.”

What is a walk score?

A walk score is a numeric ranking that represents the walkability of an address based on pedestrian-friendliness and access to businesses.

Pedestrian-friendliness is calculated by analyzing features of area roads, including the population density, intersection density, and the length of blocks in the area. Access to businesses is decided by the time it takes on foot to get to major hubs of food + entertainment.

A city’s walkability score then averages the walkability of multiple neighborhoods in a city.

For example, Old Westport (93), the Downtown Loop (87), and the Crossroads (85) scored the highest. However, Hickman Mills (20), Longview (10), and Hidden Valley (8) had among the lowest — hard to walk places without sidewalks. It becomes clear that the further south, east and north you go, the less walkable neighborhoods become.

Bike + transit scores

Trading in the walking shoes for wheels? KC ranks the same for cyclists (35) and a little worse for those choosing public transit (25). Yes, we have the Streetcar, but that’s just four lane miles out of the 6,000 lane miles that KCMO manages. The transit score is calculated based on the distance and type of nearby transit lines for the whole city.

Don’t let a bad grade get you down. There are lots of ways KC is working to improve this score. Vision Zero is a city safety-based approach that seeks to increase mobility. You can also get involved with the KC Spirit Playbook by the City Planning and Development Department or the advocacy non-profit BikeWalkKC.

KC metro scores

Kansas City, MO

  • Walk score: 35
  • Bike score: 35
  • Transit score: 25

Overland Park

  • Walk score: 35
  • Bike score: 16
  • Transit score: 46

Kansas City, KS

  • Walk score: 32
  • Bike score: 20
  • Transit score: 28


  • Walk score: 30
  • Bike score: 10
  • Transit score: 50


  • Walk score: 28
  • Bike score: 19
  • Transit score: 28

Lee’s Summit

  • Walk score: 20
  • Bike score: 29


  • Walk score: 24

Blue Springs

  • Walk score: 25
  • Bike score: 31


  • Walk score: 33
  • Bike score: 41


  • Walk score: 29
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