Top Stories of 2017

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With 2017 winding down, I couldn’t help but follow the trend of a billion other blog sites with an annual “best of” post.

This year marked several noticeable changes for the UP. Readers saw significantly more posts about my hometown of Rochester, in part because there are so many interesting topics here that apply to any city USA.

Cycling issues also took center stage, with two of the most read UP posts addressing cycling perception and the car-free lifestyle.

While I love the city tours that gave birth to the UP, these took a backseat to addressing urban issues that affect every city across our country. As our cities and their revitalizations evolve, we look to do the same, offering readers a glimpse of what healthy growth looks like.

Finally, I could not be more grateful to Strong Towns for their continued support of our message. Ten UP articles were featured on ST this year, putting this little Upstate New York blog in front of thousands of readers across the country.

So without further delay, here are the top 10 (ahem, 11) most read UP blogs written this year.

Honorable Mention – College Town & The Money Island

Why one of Rochester’s most ambitious development projects continues to fall short of expectations.

10. Parcel 5: Rochester’s Future In The Balance

The direction of Rochester’s downtown may rest on an empty parcel of land in the middle of the city.

9. 12 Weeks Of Cycling In A City Made For Cars

This year, I decided to go car-free. After 3 months, I wrote about my experience.

8. Disconnected: The Buffalo Central Terminal Debate

My take on why Buffalo’s new train station should be downtown and not in the old Buffalo Central Terminal.

7. Utica Two Years Later: A City In Transition

Two years after launching my first blog in Utica, I went back for an update on a city searching for the next step.

6. The South Wedge: Rochester’s Eclectic Urban Paradise

A tour of one of Rochester’s most organically unique neighborhoods.

5. Radio Social: Entertainment Reimagined in Rochester

A bowling alley? A high end restaurant and bar? Outdoor games indoors? A repurposed factory becomes one of Rochester’s most popular hotspots.

4. Syracuse’s Armory Square: Urban Done Right

My tour of the amazing urban centerpiece, Syracuse’s Armory Square

3. Bike Commuting’s Worst Enemy Isn’t What You Think

A commentary on the perception of cycling by non-cyclists, and how it works against cycling culture as a means of legitimate transportation.

2. Loretta, This Is The Utica I Know

In a bit of a different direction for the UP, I responded to a conservative nationalist blogger who claimed Utica, one of my favorite cities in New York, was struggling because of its immigrant population.

1. The Big Urban Mistake: Building for Tourism Versus Livability

With 10,000 more views than any other blog post the UP featured this year, this piece hit home across New York and around the country. It was subsequently shared by Strong Towns and made their “Best Of” 2017 list. I am happy to say that The Big Urban Mistake took the UP to the next level, garnering tremendous national and even international attention.

None of this would be possible without you, the good people that believe in the elements that make our communities better. Thank you for joining me on an incredible 2017 journey, here’s to “Greater Heights” in 2018!