Close to Home: Suburbia

February 02, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

Great parts of the Washington D.C. suburban landscape are devoid of life, or rather, cultural life of some sorts. Of course there are those voices that state exactly this as a cultural icon: the suburban image as part of the American ideal. This seems to be an idea on the retreat, as more and more people, even families, try to move back into urban areas. Cities have become a more attractive alternative in recent years. This is definitely the case with Washington D.C.  The biggest obstacle for moving into the city are the insanely skyrocketing prices in real estate. Otherwise there are mostly good reasons to live in the city again: many neighbourhoods have come back to life, some are hip trendsetters, shops, restaurants and cultural institutions have people enjoying the streets yet again. Social programs and infrastructure investments have shown crime the boot. Long term intelligent traffic planning (less cars and parking space, more bikes and buses with according lanes) is finally not a utopian leftwing lunatic vision anymore.

Now, this won´t kill the traditional suburban areas where living in the lush greens is still a dream for many. Some other places have developed their own livable urban centers, as Bethesda and Arlington. Yet, there are the places where once planned centers have become lifeless scenes, bloodless arteries left to an uncertain future. Other areas have arranged a working symbiosis between living areas and the necessary infrastructure of strip malls. Places where cyclists and pedestrians are still considered weird and exotic, or simply poor outsiders.
































More pics from Suburbia and other scenes






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