Going, Going...

Want a walk-friendly vacation destination? Check the lists before go

The Seattle skyline: Several reputable list say it’s a great/safe city for pedestrians.
The Seattle skyline: Several reputable list say it’s a great/safe city for pedestrians. ASSOCIATED PRESS

Apple Watch? These days, you just can’t escape the ads and stories about its release. And there’s a flood of releases about the various apps you can get for it.

Including one called the “Go Safe Map,” which debuted April 10 that ties into accident location data for pedestrians and cyclists. The day-of-launch press release says “Go, Inc. pulled together the following Apple Watch infographic which illustrates the safest cities to walk, jog or walk and the safest holiday using its new Safe Map technology.”

That’s all well and good. But the Go, Inc., publicist attached an info graphic – “drawn from over 200 million walking, biking, and driving events over the past 45 years” – that lists the 10 safest cities to walk.

Here’s the problem: Charlotte is at the top of the list. You have to wonder where that data came from. Most people who cross any street uptown know the potential for danger. Most who keep up on civic affairs – or their own neighborhood – are concerned about the city not having enough sidewalks. Or bike lanes. Or drivers who don’t speed.

Here’s the full “Go Safe” list:

1. Charlotte

2. Nashville, Tenn.

3. Louisville, Ky.

4. Chicago

5. Oklahoma City

6. Columbus, Ohio

7. Fort Worth, Texas

8. El Paso, Texas

9. Houston

10 San Antonio

Can’t help but wonder how this list was assembled. Houston? Nashville?

If you’re looking for a vacation destination where safe-walking rankings make sense, consider these lists:

Good Housekeeping magazine’s “Most Walkable Cities in America

1. New York City

2. San Francisco

3. Boston

4. Chicago

5. Philadelphia

6. Seattle

7. Washington, D.C.

8. Miami

9. Minneapolis

10. Oakland, Calif.

Prevention’s “Best U.S. Cities for Walkers”

1. Cambridge, Mass.

2. New York City

3. Jersey City, N.J.

4. San Francisco

5. Berkeley, Calif.

6. Boston

7. Patterson, N.J.

8. Chicago

9. Philadelphia

10. Newark N.J.

Atlantic magazines “11 Most Walk-Friendly U.S. Cities”

1. Seattle

2. Ann Arbor, Mich.

3. Arlington, Va.

4. Hoboken, N.J.

5. Santa Barbara, Calif.

6. Charlottesville, Va.

7. Decatur, Ga.

8. Austin, Texas

9. Charlotte

10. Flagstaff, Ariz.

But even these lists have clinkers.

So how did Charlotte end up No. 1 on the Go Safe list? Probably the same reason Charlotte weighed in at No. 9 on the Atlantic list, which was compiled in 2011: A report by walkfriendly.org . that a few years back lauded “the city's commitment to improving the pedestrian experience through innovative policy and staff support.”

Watch out for data-gathering algorithms.

And have a great time walking in Seattle.