I’m Lolly — welcome to my old blog, “Reimagine an Urban Paradise,” a collection of 180~Caffeine Free Selfieposts about bicycles, public space, the romance of exploring cities, walking, urban gardening, public transportation, living slowly. You can see keep up with new writing on Lolly Pop Tour Shop and subscribe here.

I wrote “Reimagine an Urban Paradise” regularly between August of 2009 and February of 2012.  I started it when I was living in Washington, DC and continued it as I moved first to Pittsburgh and then to San Francisco. Living in and exploring three different cities while studying and writing about many different aspects of these places gave me a helpful perspective on the best and less great aspects of each one.

I’m excited to realize that a lot of the analysis here is still extremely relevant and is part of a national conversation in a way that it wasn’t a decade ago when I first organized Car-Free Day in Washington, DC.

I constantly imagined how things could work better or be more beautiful or more resourceful, I was always dwelling on problems. I wanted to write about how to make things amazing and so I had to articulate how and why the status quo wasn’t working.

Since I started this blog, I’ve worked in bicycle advocacy and Open(ing the) Streets in Pittsburgh, San Francisco, Washington, DC, and New Orleans. I’m currently based in Asheville, NC and write at Lolly Pop Tour Shop.

Some of my favorite posts are:

Vacant Lot Transformation for Green Jobs and Neighborhood Revitalization  (April 21, 2011)

I just found this little blue-print I drew up for a vacant lot by one of my houses in Pittsburgh. I never had the chance to put this into place, but it would be wonderful to have more non-consumerist places to spend time between home and work.

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles (April 16, 2010)

I’m going back to DC on Monday and there are a few ways to get there from Pittsburgh. Most of them wholly undesirable for a number of reasons…

I prefer to ride the train because it is scenic and lovely. The route winds through gorgeous mountains and has a cafe car with windows from floor to ceiling for sightseeing. There are tables and comfy chairs that are perfect for writing, reading, drawing, anything you can think of, all while being chauffeured in the most comfortable setting with superb views. It’s pretty glamorous, actually.




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