What makes a neighborhood great to live in and do business in? It's worth figuring out.
Often, family roots dictate where we live. In fact, surveys have shown that even while we all love to travel, Americans like to stick close to home. In a Allstate/National Journal poll, the survey showed 54 percent living close to where they grew up. And when asked how likely it was that they would relocate? 61 percent said that relocation was very unlikely. This can make a business easy for those in Savannah who have gone to the same family run establishments for years.
If the chance of moving to a better neighborhood is low for Americans. It makes sense to figure out what makes for a better neighborhood. When criteria for a safe, happy neighborhood is clear, community efforts can be targeted in the right direction. These are the best places for business as much like Savannah, much of the income of the area depends on people wanting to visit.
Here are some key components for creating a neighborhood where people are happy with their environment.
When an area is family friendly, it targets the full range of family members. Not just parents with little kids, but seniors, teens, and young adults, too. Having spaces in your city or town that allow families to socialize and that bring people together is an essential aspect. Where does this togetherness occur? Areas that get it right often use urban design architecture firms that design and create buildings that contribute in a positive way to the heartbeat of a community. Buildings are not just buildings. They are environments that become a permanent part of a town's fabric. And can cause citizens to look at their town with pride.
Safe sidewalks and roadways.
A city that provides wide options for transportation, either personal or public, is a city that citizens will be happy with. In a ranking of the happiest cities in the US, Boulder, CO topped the list. Looking at the factors that contributed to this ranking, it was observed that the percentage of people walking or cycling to work was high. Creating an environment that encourages people to walk has many benefits. First, the city is encouraging the public to be eco-friendly. Second, the benefits to a person's health are large. Walking just 30 minutes a day is connected to emotional health greater feelings of well-being. Not to mention the physical health benefits that are more well known.
Safe roads and pathways around neighborhoods is such an important aspect of what makes neighborhoods easy to dwell in. So much so, that it is listed on the American Planning Association's characteristics of a great neighborhood listing.
Focus on socialization.
The American Planning Association's also lists whether the area encourages socialization. Human contact and socializing has long been known to provide health benefits for the elderly. As well as being a vital need for those in their formative years. An area that ranks high in providing socialization opportunities contains some or all the following:
Opportunities for volunteering
Nutrition learning opportunities
Ease of access.
A well-planned neighborhood means that all the essential elements that play a part in one's life are within easy access of one's house. The post office is not too far away. The supermarket is close enough that a person can walk to pick up a forgotten item for the night's dinner. When all needed facilities and entertainment options are within walking range, you get a city that has easy access. This is another element that many of the cities have that are ranked high on the listing for happiest cities in the US.
Of course, areas that are well-designed from the start have an advantage over cities and towns that want to improve their ease of access. But there are many ways to transform spaces and give them a second life. For example, through finding new uses for abandoned lots, or having a certain space pull double duty.
Shops, restaurants, and other entertainment options provide variety and interest to residents. Even for citizens who prefer to live a quieter life, having the option of eating out ranks high on what people desire in a neighborhood.
Thankfully, this is one of the easiest and quickest ways to improve and enhance one's city or neighborhood. Opening a new restaurant, provided it is good, can boost happiness levels as well as encourage pride of place.
Looking at the aspects that make a neighborhood great is a good exercise for community elders and town leadership. One does not need to move to find a great neighborhood. Cities and communities can focus on actions that will turn our immediate surroundings into the ideal.