With the national average price of gasoline topping $4 a gallon, it's a propitious time to make the case for gas-sipping neighborhoods.As well they should have. (And it’s about time, we might add.)
Owning a home in walkable neighborhoods saves residents $300 to $400 a month, up to $4,800 a year, on gas expenses alone, according to research by the Congress for the New Urbanism.
Kicking the car habit [can yield even larger benefits]: Traffic congestion sucked $78 billion from the economy in 2005, added 4.2 billion hours in commuter time, and wasted almost 3 billion gallons of gasoline, according to a 2007 Urban Mobility Report by the Texas Transportation Institute.
Places with plenty of mass transit and high rates of bicycle usage have received applause from presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama on the campaign trail lately.
As for Fishtown:
Fishtown (Philadelphia, Pa.)Ha. Alliteration.
Cost: $674 per month
Convert centrally located warehouses into art galleries and loft apartments, and frustrated yuppie commuters will follow. That's part of why Fishtown, a district located along the Delaware River shore, is experiencing a revival. Transportation costs are the second-lowest among neighborhoods in the 10 largest metropolitan markets.
Public transit ridership, at around 12%, bests some census tracts that border Temple University, a hub of frugal-minded students. With the time saved shuttling to nearby center-city Philly, Fishtowners frolic by foot in the hood's thrift stores and funky bookstores.
Special Report: America's Most Fuel-Efficient Neighborhoods — with accompanying slideshow [ Forbes ]