You’re cooking dinner. You realize you’re missing a key ingredient – garlic for the pasta, let’s say, or lettuce for your salad. Something without which you can’t get the meal on the table. How long would it take you to walk to a store where you can buy it?
The heat maps can easily tell you how far away two points are at a glance, to let you know how long your walk is going to be.
"These maps show how long it takes to get everywhere else via walking and public transit," Hardin writes in an email. "This allows you to make some important comparisons, such as ‘if I move here, I can reach half the city in 50 minutes if I start at 8 a.m.’" His paper explains more of the technical details.
Space syntax and the modeling of walkability and urban pathways.
“The science is still growing, and the models are becoming more robust. Eventually, Stonor wants to map how space affects peoples’ social interactions. “How do the ways people know their neighbors vary with spatial layout?” he wonders.”
Share of commuters who walk and bicycle in U.S. largest cities. Source.
Lotta work to do, but it’s a start.
The ethnographer has spent four years on an epic quest to crisscross the city, walking all five boroughs, all 120,000 city blocks. He compares himself to a marathoner, regularly pulling out the statistic that his research has taken him the distance from New York to L.A. and back, plus another 900 miles, the equivalent of a side jaunt to St. Louis.