Walkability and Fair Lawn’s River Road Commercial District

Families from in and around the River Road district in Fair lawn, NJ enjoy the annual Pet-Walk event, sponsored by the River Road Improvement Corporation. For nearly three decades the RRIC has served as an advocate and planning agent for the enhancement of pedestrian friendly sidewalks and crosswalks on River Road, starting with the installation of a new streetscape in the 1990's.

Walkability is a key component to the development and growth of modern neighborhoods in both urban and suburban communities. According to a 2014 Study conducted by The George Washington University School of Business, there is, in fact, already a distinct correlation between walkability and real estate values, both commercial and residential.

“Cities that want to thrive in our new economic and demographic realities will need to find ways to create and support more of these dynamic, productive walkable districts that are in high demand,” said Geoff Anderson, CEO of Smart Growth America.

One district in Bergen county that is positioned well to take advantage of walkability is Fair Lawn’s River Road. So how does the River Road commercial district and adjacent blocks rank in terms value and walkability? According to Walk Score, a professional advisory board comprised of urban planners and environmental/technical experts, River Road scores a 77! This score indicated a rating of “very walkable”.

How does River Road stack up against a few other Bergen County communities? Westwood Avenue in River Vale scored a 45 (car dependent), East Ridgewood Avenue in Ridgewood scored a 66 (somewhat walkable) and Broad Avenue in Leonia scored an 80 (very walkable).

Local stakeholders, including the River Road Improvement Corporation, which is the designated District Management Corporation for River Road’s Special Improvement District, believe that walkability is just one more example of the value that the River Road commercial district brings to residents, business owners and all those who look toward investing in River Road’s future.

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