[sbs_tax tax="States"] [sbs_tax tax="Albany"]

Front yards in the Federal City: even the close-knit rowhomes feature green plots for garden gnomes. Or (since it’s Capitol Hill) political signs.

In these polarizing and emotionally fraught times, it has ostensibly become far more common for people to announce their political loyalties from the front yards of their homes—not just by promoting the campaigns of preferred candidates, but (at least in recent years) to overtly declare one’s stance on a certain issue, or even to declare

German Street in Shepherdstown, WV: where, instead of a curb at the sidewalk, there’s a fence.  And shrubs.

The prosperous little municipality of Shepherdstown, fortuitously situated along the Potomac River in the eastern panhandle of West Virginia, boasts a charming three-block main street, German Street, with nothing but locally owned establishments, achieving almost perfect occupancy amidst its variegated, well-maintained 19th century buildings.  It’s an enviable arrangement, no doubt enhanced by its location in

In the urban jungle, a crosswalk for guineafowl.

As I manage issues regarding data migration from my old computer to new—apparently a process that, so far, has involved over four hours with tech support and no success—I must resign myself to another mini-post to keep things going when time is scarce.  On a bright May morning, I was trolling around downtown Trenton, New

A construction staging area and a sidewalk: never a healthy pairing, but sometimes the treatment is worse than the disease.

For most of the 21st century, and certainly in the last ten years (since the Great Depression) the majority of American downtowns have enjoyed a reinvestment no longer measured merely in spruced-up old façades. The cranes, dozers and other construction equipment are all the evidence one needs. People are returning to central business districts, in

Rise over run: Portland parks contend with steep slopes.

Both nestled in and perched on the Willamette Valley, Oregon’s largest city of Portland (by far) has its share of dramatic slopes and sublime vistas. This should come as no surprise. And although nearly three-quarters of the municipal limits sit to the east of the Willamette River, downtown Portland and most of its highest points

Age-restricted bicycling: double-wheeled rules for the single-digit phase in life.

As bicycling becomes an increasingly acceptable—and even fully integrated—mode of transportation, sharing our car-dominated streets, we should expect some enforcement of standards that better facilitate this integration. We’re not there yet—not even close. Plenty of heavily urbanized spaces have yet to acknowledge bicycling as a viable alternative to cars through the provision of infrastructure, even

In the urban jungle, a crosswalk for guineafowl.

As I manage issues regarding data migration from my old computer to new—apparently a process that, so far, has involved over four hours with tech support and no success—I must resign myself to