Other Walkers, Part 4

Despite all of the interesting and fun things going on in Berkeley and the rest of the East Bay, it is sometimes difficult to convince friends and acquaintances in San Francisco to make the trip over here. I can understand — driving over the Bay Bridge at most times is a nightmare, and BART might seem intimidating if you are not used to taking public transportation (though it is an easy and quick trip to and from San Francisco) or if you are uncomfortable with being in an underwater tube. New York City seems to have a reputation for taking the “I never leave the city” sentiment to a whole other level. I have heard plenty of stories of references to anywhere outside of the city as “upstate” or comments about not having any reason to go anywhere else. But even leaving Manhattan for the other boroughs is unheard of for some. Staten Island always seems to get the worst of it. In a New Yorker “Talk of the Town” piece from earlier this fall about a guidebook to the borough of Queens, one of the founders of the company says “the one [guidebook] we really will not do is Staten Island. There’s just nothing there.” Despite the humorous nature of the article, I wished upon reading that statement that I could move to Staten Island for a year and walk all of its streets. Somehow I do not believe there is really nothing there. Luckily, I can stay where I am right now because someone just started walking streets the of Staten Island. Needless to say, I am pretty excited to follow the progress of the walk, and I am particularly interested in hearing more about the abandoned hospitals and other buildings that are supposed to be located there.

Speaking of abandonment, another walker I am now following is Neath, who is based in Montreal. His blog, Walking Turcot Yards, describes his exploration of “a vast incredible ‘abandoned’ space in the south west of Montreal.” Lots of interesting topics are covered on the blog — such as urban exploration, development, and railroad history — and there are many great photos of the area. One interesting thing that I have been finding in my periodic searches for others walkers is people doing walks as art projects or as an academic exploration in fields such as landscape architecture, urban theory, and psychogeography. Stayed tuned for a future post looking at some of these projects and at the different reasons why people are out there walking.

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1 Comment »

  1. Suzanne said

    Looking forward to the future post about people’s motivations for Walking (with a capital W.)

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