what makes a community
By Brian E. Clark
After Clay Scarborough’s kids headed off to college a decade ago and he and his wife became empty nesters, they didn’t just downsize from their suburban home in the northern Atlanta suburbs. “We were tired of commuting,” said
Scarborough, who is now 62. “We knew we wanted to
live in a more walkable community. So we sold our place
in the suburbs and moved into a condominium in Decatur, which borders Atlanta and is just five miles east of
downtown.” Their condo is 1,315 square feet and cost
“We got a place that is just about a block from the downtown square, which is ideal for us,” he explained, noting
that within a short distance, he and his spouse can walk
to a grocery store, pharmacy and restaurants. If they still
Photos courtesy of Georgia Department of Economic Development
We knew we wanted to live in
a more walkable community.
had kids in the house, their children would be able to
amble to school, too.
The Scarboroughs aren’t alone in their desire to live in
walkable communities. Studies show there has been a
shift in Americans’ attitudes toward living in walkable versus drive-only communities, some of which don’t even
“The most requested attribute I hear is walkability,” said
Andrea Evers, a REALTOR® with Evers & Co. Real Estate
in Washington, D.C., and who grew up in the suburbs.
“I noticed the change start to happen about a decade ago,”