How does Urban Calculator contribute to Sustainable Development Agenda?

In line with the Sustainable Development agenda, urban environments should, besides providing equal access to services, become more walkable to reduce car-dependency and CO2 emissions. According to NACTO (2013), cars and trucks account for 40% of all CO2 emissions across the globe. 

Urban Calculator supports the design of walkable environments reducing car dependency and the environmental impact of cities. There is consensus that designing well-connected streets and dense mixed-use areas contributes to increasing sustainable travel and decreasing car ownership and vehicle miles travelled. Further, good accessibility to services or bus stops is decisive for our choice of travel mode. Walking to the grocery store, for instance, reduces significantly if the store is further than 400 meters .

Second, Urban Calculator supports the design of inclusive urban areas with equal access for all. Currently cities show variations in accessibility to services and thus, people’s opportunities differ depending on where they live. For instance, improving accessibility to green areas contributes to improving human health and tackles health inequalities as notably, the positive effect is larger for lower income groups. Therefore, analyzing proximity and accessibility to services, including the possibility to distinguish between different socioeconomic group, should become standard in urban development projects.