This report looks at the cost savings and economic benefits of investments in active transportation and Safe Routes to School—including medical cost savings from improving safety, reducing costs of obesity due to increased physical activity, and increases in economic benefits such as increased rents or property values, tourism revenue, and more jobs.
Efforts to increase active transportation can be slowed by a lack of resources to invest in sidewalks, crosswalks, trails and traffic calming. Improving walkability has more than health benefits though; it can also be good for the pocketbook, government budgets, and the overall economy. Looking at the cost savings and economic benefits of investments in Safe Routes to School, walking and biking can help make the case for increasing those investments.
With the research findings and data from this report, local governments can use the power of data about health and economic benefits to secure greater funding for active transportation and Safe Routes to School. Advocates for public health and active transportation can utilize these examples to help residents envision what they want for their communities and their own lives, and to push for greater investments in walking and biking.