Walking trends in Columbus

Average daily walking trips dropped by 36% in the US between 2019 and 2022 — see how Columbus compares.

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City Editor Hanna prefers strolling the Scioto Mile. | Photo by CBUStoday

Table of Contents

If you’ve been singing the lyrics “I walk a lonely road” a lot lately, you’re not… alone (well, in a sense). Columbus roads are actually even lonelier than many, but we’ll get to that in a minute.

If national averages indicate anything, it’s that roads overall may have been more lonely during the past few years. According to a recent data report by Streetlight, annual average daily walking trips dropped 36% in the US between 2019 and 2022.

How does that national average shake out in the Columbus metro area, and where are the best spots to raise those national trend (and step count) numbers? Let’s take a look.

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Find this 30-ft waterfall inside Hayden Falls Park. | Photo by @pavonia_shelly_photography

By the numbers

  • -46% | Percent change in walking trips in Ohio
  • -47% | Percent change in walking trips in Columbus
  • 41 | Columbus’s score out of 100 on Walk Score’s walkability meter

What does a percent change in walking trips mean? Say a metro area sees a -50% change in walking trips. This means, on average, walking trips declined by 50% in that area. (For the record, none of the top 100 metros in the study saw that much of a decline — the biggest dip was 49% in Akron, OH.)

Where to walk the walk

Wondering where you can get your steps in? Check out these pedestrian-friendly spots around town, from local parks to trusted trails.

  • Bicentennial Park, 233 S. Civic Center Dr. | Walk along the iconic Scioto Mile at this downtown riverfront park and trail. Bonus: Take in scenic views of the downtown skyline while you stroll.
  • Hayden Falls Park, 4326 Hayden Run Rd. | Walk through this two-acre park full of nature and wildlife, best known for its beautiful waterfall.
  • Goodale Park, 120 W. Goodale St. | Columbus’ oldest public park is filled with greenery, walking paths, and a fishing pond.
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