One of the biggest reasons we chose to live on the base is for the walkability that it provides.
The US is extremely dependent on cars. We need cars to get everywhere. In most neighborhoods in the US you even have to drive to go to the gym in order to exercise.
But when I moved to China, I walked everywhere for four years. Sometimes I took the bus, but often, I found that if I planned ahead (about an hour) I could walk downtown. This was a great thing to discover because I studied Mandarin twice a week downtown, and sometimes those classes were during the infamous 4:30-6:30 rush hour. I found that by walking instead of taking the bus I usually got home around the same time as I would if I had taken the bus. Occasionally I rented a bike, but for the most part I walked everywhere I went the whole time I lived there.
When we moved to Japan, I had the option of driving, and did sometimes, but often would walk to the train stop or the bus stop and would take public transit. I had a bike at this point, and often rode my bike, but still ended up walking much more than I did in the US.
On base, with a toddler, I actually find it much easier to walk or bike on the base than to put my son in a car seat, get him out put him back in and struggle with him in a parking lot. To be honest, walking is just easier.
Growing up, I always walked or rode my bike to school unless it rained. I hope someday in the future we’ll be able to still walk or bike with our kids to their schools.