2023 Slatterly Park Walk Audit - Join us!
2023 Slatterly Park Walk Audit
A Walk Audit is a fun, interactive way to assess the pedestrian experience in our neighborhoods.
WHEN: Saturday, September 9 |10am - 12PM
WHERE: Redeemer Lutheran Church 869 7th Ave SE, Rochester, MN
Walking together, we identify potential improvements to sidewalks, crosswalks, lighting, traffic flow, and assess the pedestrian-friendliness and walkability of our neighborhoods. Our goal: a community that is walkable for people of all ages.
You do not need to be a resident of the Slattery Park neighborhood to participate. All are welcome in this inclusive, community event. Learn about walkability. Experience a walk audit. Bring it to your neighborhood!
How It Works
- We will gather at the Redeemer Lutheran Church 869 7th Ave SE, Rochester, MN
- After a brief program, 12 teams of 3 - 5 walk auditors will disperse to 12 starting points throughout the Slatterly Park neighborhood in southeast Rochester.
- Each team will have a team leader who has received training in completing a walk audit.
- Some teams will then walk along a pre-determined route noting and recording observations about sidewalk conditions, intersections, traffic flow, and other elements of their pedestrian experience.
- A few teams may make observations a specific site - for example, major intersections.
- After completing their routes, team leaders will submit their team's observations for compilation and analysis.
- Following the audit, We Bike Rochester will treat audit participants frozen treats at La Michoacana (28 9th St SE) where attendees will be invited to discuss their observations and recommendations.
- A report of the Walk Audit will be presented at a Rochester city council study session later in the fall.
This project is supported by an AARP Community Challenge grant with support from America Walks, a leader in advancing walkable, equitable, connected, and accessible places in every community across the U.S.
We will be using AARP's Walking Audit toolkit - a comprehensive guide designed to help individuals, communities, and organizations assess the pedestrian-friendliness and walkability of their neighborhoods. The toolkit aims to empower participants to identify potential improvements for safer, more accessible, and enjoyable walking experiences.
What is a Walk Audit?
A walking audit is a community-driven activity that involves a group of people walking through a specific area, typically a neighborhood, commercial district, or public space, to assess and evaluate various aspects related to pedestrian safety, accessibility, and overall walkability. The goal of a walking audit is to gather valuable insights from pedestrians themselves and identify areas for improvement to make the environment more conducive to walking and active transportation.
During a walking audit, participants observe and document the conditions of sidewalks, crosswalks, intersections, street lighting, traffic flow, presence of bike lanes, public amenities like benches and restrooms, green spaces, and other elements that impact pedestrian experiences. They may also take note of potential safety hazards, barriers to mobility, and areas that lack connectivity.
The audit is usually led by community organizers, local authorities, or advocacy groups interested in promoting pedestrian-friendly urban planning and sustainable transportation. The gathered information is then used to inform urban development plans, transportation projects, and initiatives aimed at enhancing walkability and ensuring that pedestrian needs are considered in city planning.
Walking audits are valuable tools for fostering community engagement, encouraging public input, and empowering residents to actively participate in shaping the future of their neighborhoods. By actively involving pedestrians in the process, walking audits promote a people-centric approach to urban design and help create safer, healthier, and more vibrant communities.
Participating in a walking audit can be a rewarding and impactful experience for several reasons:
- Voice Your Concerns: Walking audits provide an opportunity for you to voice your concerns and observations about the pedestrian experience in your community. By participating, you can share your insights directly with local authorities and decision-makers, making them aware of issues that might otherwise go unnoticed.
- Community Engagement: Walking audits are community-driven events that bring people together. You get to interact with fellow residents, community leaders, and local organizers who share a common goal of making the neighborhood more pedestrian-friendly.
- Promote Safety: Walking audits can help identify safety hazards, such as poorly designed crosswalks, inadequate lighting, or high-traffic areas without proper pedestrian infrastructure. Your involvement can contribute to making your neighborhood safer for pedestrians of all ages and abilities.
- Encourage Active Transportation: By highlighting the importance of walkability, walking audits can promote active transportation choices, like walking and cycling, which can lead to improved public health and reduced environmental impact.
Walking audits are inclusive events and your unique perspective as a pedestrian is valuable. So, put on your walking shoes and join the audit!