A lot has changed since I first joined The Grid’s blogging community 24 blog posts ago. Blogging about urban planning in Baltimore gave me the opportunity to get to know the city I’d lived just north of while attending university. The Grid also allowed me to explore a growing interest in urban planning, which, through exploration and writing, eventually became a journey to a new career path.
When I first began blogging for The Grid, I was conducting economic research and analysis for Towson University. Months later, I leave The Grid living and working in Baltimore City, with a new job as a transportation planner. I am a fellow for the recently-convened Opportunity Fellows program, and an increasingly active participant in various planning groups for Baltimore and Maryland. A handful of people have provided me with guidance and have opened new opportunities to me along the way. With some time freed up from blogging, I hope to use those opportunities to benefit the Baltimore Region.
When deciding where to live in Baltimore, my experiences wandering around for blog research helped a great deal in picking a neighborhood, and which neighborhood I didn’t want to live in. The past year has also helped me decide what kind of neighbor I want to be in Baltimore. I can see the prison complex that I wrote about from my window, where protests occurred in response to Freddie Gray’s death. I chose a neighborhood near decent bike infrastructure, an awesome farmer’s market supporting local farmers, and near my office so I could become a former car owner. All of the walking I did for my urban hike post confirmed parts of Baltimore can be pretty walkable, granted there is one intersection on my way to work at which I would love just a little more pedestrian priority.
There have been many highlights while blogging for The Grid that will help me as I adjust to my new career and new neighborhood. It’s been rewarding to be part of a global community of bloggers passionate about urban planning, environmental design, and urban issues in their cities and each others. I find that reading about the urban planning and environmental problems and solutions of other cities is a great way to gain new perspectives for similar local issues, so I look forward to reading the blogs posts and book reviews of The Grid’s current and future bloggers.
Credits: Images by Jade Clayton. Data linked to sources.