15-minute city to 5-minute neighborhood

At Pedestrian Space, diverse coverage on the 15-minute city includes:

•Sharing about 15-minute city workshops & talks we have done
•Sharing about Residential Narratives on the concept as captured through surveys as well as workshops
•Media Advocacy on the concept
•Research commentary on the concept
•Mitigating misunderstanding & aspects of controversy related to the topic
•Centering issues of Quality of Life as well as Spatial Equity when discussing the concept as a principle of healthy urbanism


As I walked with my daughter out of her dance class studio earlier this week, exchanging nods and smiles with fellow parents, running into one of her former preschool teachers on the sidewalk (who is now on maternity leave but also lives in the neighborhood), I thought about how this chapter of my family’s life in Poland’s capital has provided so much extremely rich experience and observation on dynamic public transit, commuting, 15-minute city context at neighborhood level (also my dissertation topic) and 5-minute neighborhood lifestyle.

When we first moved to Warsaw, I had my kids in 2 different schools in 2 different districts. I was more regularly at the Institute, where I am a PhD student, in the city center. Mornings were intensive with a couple of public transit transfers, but I was always proud of how we handled this new big city (for us) lifestyle and commuting.

After several months, everything shifted. I was engrossed in fieldwork and able to do all my project work remotely. For other reasons, we had to change my kid’s schooling and move them to neighborhood schools and overnight, our lifestyle shifted to a 5-minute neighborhood one.

Over these last several months, our connection to neighborhood life has come more alive. I see it as an animation in my mind, the blocks of the neighborhood blooming with time with more connectivity and familiarity.

I remember that first week after we made the change, walking with my kids to school and the utter, absolute liberation I felt to be able to move by foot with them, watch them laugh, run and talk en route.

Have you experienced a 5-minute neighborhood lifestyle?

A bit more commentary about that juicy 5-minute neighborhood lifestyle, for me, a building block of vibrant healthy urbanism.