Friday, April 29, 2022

Street Widths in American Cities

American streets tend to be much wider than streets in other countries. The average width of a residential street in the United States is 55 ft. For comparison, in Paris in post-1990 developments the average street width is less than 20 ft. While in Tokyo the average street in post-1990 developments is just 16.4 feet wide.

Street widths obviously differ in different U.S. cities. Streets in Cleveland for example are on average 71.5 feet wide (or about 4.5x the width of the average Tokyo street). While streets in Philadelphia are on average only 26.6 feet wide.

The UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies argues that America's wide streets have huge economic consequences, particularly in areas where housing is expensive and where land is scarce. Dedicating so much land to street space reduces the amount of housing that can be built and consequently pushes up the cost of local real-estate. 

In Street Widths - the widths and values of residential streets the Institute of Transportation Studies has published a number of interactive maps visualizing the widths of streets in U.S. cities and the land value of those streets (based on local housing values). The main interactive map in the study allows you to explore the widths and land worth of individual streets in 20 large U.S. counties. Other interactive maps in the study look at the average worth of streets in these 20 counties, show the average width of streets in cities in other countries around the world, and chart the frequency of different street widths in U.S. counties.

No comments: