It’s no secret that dense, urban neighborhoods promote walkability, but now a scientific study shows even more benefits of density. Researchers at the University of Utah created a model to simulate social interaction based on possible live and work locations. What they found should come as no surprise: characteristics of urban sprawl, especially decentralization, significantly decrease socializing opportunities. Steven Farber, an assistant professor of geography involved in the study, states that “it is clear that intensifying development has the most positive effect on social interaction.” In other words, walkable places = neighborly places. According to Farber, the next step is to use these findings to assess how transportation and land use patterns affect socialization differently within a region.
Click here to read an article about the study on Science Daily.