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Publisher's Summary

Jeff Speck has dedicated his career to determining what makes cities thrive. And he has boiled it down to one key factor: walkability. The very idea of a modern metropolis evokes visions of bustling sidewalks, vital mass transit, and a vibrant, pedestrian-friendly urban core. But in the typical American city, the car is still king, and downtown is a place that’s easy to drive to but often not worth arriving at.

Making walkability happen is relatively easy and cheap; seeing exactly what needs to be done is the trick. In this essential new book, Speck reveals the invisible workings of the city, how simple decisions have cascading effects, and how we can all make the right choices for our communities.

Bursting with sharp observations and real-world examples, giving key insight into what urban planners actually do and how places can and do change, Walkable City lays out a practical, necessary, and eminently achievable vision of how to make our normal American cities great again.

©2012 Jeff Speck (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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Good information

What did you like best about Walkable City? What did you like least?

There is a lot of good information about how to make cities more walkable. The recommendations are more than can be done by a given city in most cases, and the author explains this well in the final chapter of the book.

What three words best describe Jeff Speck’s performance?

a bit dull

Any additional comments?

I learned about this book via a Jeff Speck talk on TED. He is a much, much better live speaker than a book reader. I was disappointed in his reading, compared to what I saw in his TED talks.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Biased author?

I enjoyed this book and found the information very interesting. However, many points made by the author, though possible or probable, were defended passionately yet sometimes lacking unmistakable evidence. Many arguments had several variables that could not strongly defend its theories. That said, I believe a handful of the theories were valid and at least should be considered for city planners.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • L
  • 07-11-17

Change the way you think about your environment

Between SUBURBAN NATION and this book, your eyes will be opened and then you'll find yourself thinking, "of course, it makes sense!"

how we can reimagine our urban and suburban landscapes to be more pleasing, reduce crime, lower stress, reduce obesity, increase interactions and community, and help local business.

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Cities Make More Sense Now

I've never understood why it's so difficult to drive into Boston and Washington DC. Now that I understand that's they're purposely set up to make that difficult, I'm more inclined to take public transportation and more equipped to beat that system. Win/Win

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Uniformly excellent

Uniformly excellent, from content to accessibility. The narration was quite conversational and drew the listener in. It left me wanting to learn more.

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Wonderful, thought provoking well researched book!

I am an architect. I was also taught, and for awhile was quite taken with, the idolization of the starchitect and the idea that the ultimate pursuit in architecture was to either have a strong theoretical concept and/or a bold architectural language. Every time I thought to myself quietly though, I began to really question if this is what makes attractive cities.
Fast forward a few years and I have for the most part dumped this idea and it's wonderful to have books which lend credence and weight to the argument that a quality city is made from a large collection of very small moves. This book illustrates this beautifully and I really hope more people in the building profession come to their senses and stop scarring our streets with oversized sculptural objects. Well done, Mr. Speck

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Read by the Author

Took me a few minutes to get used to the author's voice, as opposed to one of those generic-spounding professional audiobook readers, but once I did it was clear that he put way more of his heart into it than anyone else could have. A fantastic book for anyone interested in cities, transportation, and urbanites.

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Listen as you Walk to Work

Would you consider the audio edition of Walkable City to be better than the print version?

Any book like this will benefit from illustrations and diagrams more readily available in print, however having the actual author read this to you adds something that you can't get in print.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Walkable City?

The acknowledgement that one recipe can't work for every city and some cities would struggle to ever implement European/NYC style mass transit or walk-ability.

Have you listened to any of Jeff Speck’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I have not.

What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

The habit of walking can and should be coaxed rather than coerced.

Any additional comments?

A lifelong passion of mine is pedestrian friendly communities, so I'm definitely biased in favor of anything this book has to say, however, I was genuinely surprised how the subject matter adapted to the audio book format. I will probably buy the print version as a reference.

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Compelling with many great ideas & proposals!

Jeff presented a compelling case and I am excited and hopeful that my city will one day be really walkable instead of one that is neither here or there.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Drab narration

As an urban studies major and as someone who well versed in this subject, i believe the content is superb and that the narration is sooo absolutely boring and dreary. It was hard listening to Jeff speak and how every sentence sounds completely different from the next as if some paragraphs were done in multiple takes. I did not enjoy that and it was difficult to absorb all of the details and information from the great content of this book.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful