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9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Earth and Space Sciences, English Language Arts

Resource Type

  • Article

Regional Focus


Walkable Cities

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  • This resource details the benefits, potential financial and economic outcomes, and hurdles of increasing the number of walkable cities worldwide.
  • Students will learn about the benefits of walkable cities, the design needed to increase walkability, and how more walkable cities could help reduce greenhouse gas concentrations. 
Teaching Tips


  • This resource makes complicated concepts easy to understand.
  • Students will benefit from text features that add to comprehension, such as meaningful headings and subheadings, sidebars, and data.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should have prior knowledge of carbon emissions and climate change. 


  • Cross-curricular connections can be made in social studies classes discussing city planning and design or health classes thinking about how walking impacts human health.
  • After reading, have students brainstorm how to increase walkability in their city or town using the design principles from the article. 
  • As an extension, have students design walkable cities of their own in groups or individually.
  • Economics classes could research the costs involved with adding more sidewalks and paths for non-vehicle transportation in their city.
Scientist Notes
This resource introduces a solution to reducing emissions by creating more walkable cities. It includes a brief introduction of urban spaces and making these spaces more walkable. A methodology, scenarios, and models are provided; along with results and a discussion about creating more walkable communities. This resource would be a great addition to a lesson discussing alternative methods to reducing carbon emissions. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • HS-ESS3-4 Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
      • HS-ESS3-5 Analyze geoscience data and the results from global climate models to make an evidence-based forecast of the current rate of global or regional climate change and associated future impacts to Earth systems.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Reading: Science & Technical Subjects (6-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of science and technical texts, attending to important distinctions the author makes and to any gaps or inconsistencies in the account.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.2 Determine the central ideas or conclusions of a text; summarize complex concepts, processes, or information presented in a text by paraphrasing them in simpler but still accurate terms.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.4 Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 11-12 texts and topics.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.11-12.10 By the end of grade 12, read and comprehend science/technical texts in the grades 11-CCR text complexity band independently and proficiently.
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