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June 2011
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A Funny Thing Happened on the way to Lunch

I’m a fan of packing my lunch. You get to pick what you want. You can have a light lunch. You can eat outside, in your office, in the car. You can choose to have desert before you eat the healthier stuff. But sometimes it’s nice to celebrate with friends and go out for lunch.

A co-worker was going on mat leave so we all decided to have lunch together. We picked a restaurant close to work and agreed to meet at the lobby 15 minutes before our reservation. We congregated in the lobby chatting, waiting for the stragglers to come down from their offices, and then the debate over who was going to drive began!

Drive!? ‘You want to drive?’ I asked. I was absolutely adamant that I was walking. It was a beautiful sunny day. I wanted to stretch my legs. But my friends insisted on driving. I overheard ‘I want to make sure I’m back in good time.’

I just GoogleMaps’d the location and it is 850m! I think I arrived one minute after they did. Returning back to the office, with the left turns and the lights, I was back at my desk before my office mates.

We relate our cars to efficient, time-saving machines, but sometimes they are quite the opposite.

I decided to look up what the average distance people are willing to walk to amenities.

In order to get the points for being close to amenities under the CaGBC/USGBC LEED for New Homes one has to construct within a half mile/800m of a frequent transit stop or community resources. I also did a quick Google search and found on average people are willing to walk between 1/4 mile/400m and 1/2 mile/800m.

Physical and mental health is on the decline and obesity is on the rise. A simple way to help combat this is to walk to lunch.