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82 articles

Blank wall bravado: a trendy neighborhood’s supermarket is more and less than meets the eye.

This article represents an interesting first.  Frankly, I’m surprised it’s taken this long—15 years of blogging!—for someone to approach me about this while I was out snapping pics for my blog.  Given that I have over 20,000 photos consisting primarily of mailboxes, parking meters, cracked curbs, lonely utility poles, labelscars, and miscellany that would only

A downtown without clear pedestrian advocacy: the Fort Worth example.

Many years ago—before I even had conceived of this blog—I was an intern for a university semester at WalkBoston, which was (and remains) the signature pedestrian advocacy organization for Bean Town.  Founded in 1990, it was the first of its kind in the country.  Since then (and since my internship), WalkBoston’s scope and ambitions have

Dueling dollar stores in a small town: why would identical companies share a party wall?

During the season of giving, it’s not likely that most people’s first notion of a repository for seasonal gifts is a dollar store.  Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Festivus, you name it. I suppose I’m making an elitist generalization here: after all, many people lack the wherewithal for purchase gifts anywhere other than a dollar store.  Furthermore,

Gourmet grocer with a vague name. There’s more to it than just “gourmet”.

Slaters Lane is a disproportionately important street in Alexandria, Virginia, considering its brief length.  From end to end, it measures only a half of mile, and an additional 500 feet of that length is a stub that dead-ends into an office/residential complex near the Potomac River a bit further eastward.  But the other ~2100 feet

Glenwood Springs: so much to do that they could only fit some of it under a bridge. (MONTAGE)

Glenwood Springs, Colorado is a fun town.  That’s its brand.  It aspires to be one of America’s most recreationally-minded small municipalities—really more of a tiny city—and it routinely makes the top 10 lists among various outdoor-centric periodicals, as I covered once before.  Sometimes it reaches a bit further, placing on lists of all-around best and

Yellow caution bumper stickers: not just a safe driving strategy. Now a meme.

It’s time to confess: I’m beholden to my most successful blog posts, which sometimes feature a subject I don’t really care all that much about, but hey—if it gets good engagement and stimulates conversation, why not explore it again?  That’s precisely the case with those yellow caution bumper stickers (or perhaps they’re magnets?) that have

North Fillmore in Arlington: a street whose traffic flow changes mid-block.

The expansive, oddly shaped downtown district of Arlington, Virginia (it’s a county, even though it feels like a city) features some unusual intersections, which no doubt confuse motorists and pedestrians who are unfamiliar with the area.  These intersections were nowhere near as precarious back in the day, when most of the area consisted of low-slung

Protected bike lanes: a plush solution for a pedestrian problem.

Never afraid to rouse the ire of urban activists by challenging their orthodoxy, I’m going to give it a try in what will remain my current stomping grounds at least a little while longer: Washington DC.  Yes, even amidst all the eggheads around these parts, and despite a generally commendable urban fabric (most of DC

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