For our next problem, we’re focusing on a very real site – the dreaded shopping center on Pantops Mountain directly east of Free Bridge, the epitome of Charlottesville-Albemarle area sprawl.
Thankfully, I’ve been tasked with examining the bicycle and pedestrian connections to the site (currently not many), and assessing the site for potential connections. The Old Mills Trail is perhaps one of my most favorite places in Charlottesville – it’s a beautiful place to run or explore along the Rivanna River, and there are some connections to the Pantops Shopping Center that could be strengthened should the space be put to better use. Right now, no bike infrastructure exists in the area, and Free Bridge is plagued with so many lanes of traffic that you have to go up and down the stairs and under the bridge to get to the other side – the process is confusing to the point where I have trouble even articulating it.
I came across some cool visualizations a while ago from I Quant NY, a site that uses open data from New York City to map out and graph out topics of interest, that could provide some useful fodder for inspiring my own site analysis diagrams.