Yesterday, I finally had a chance to walk the newest section of the Cultural Trail along Walnut Street. Unfortunately, I was without my camera, but visuals will be better if I wait until the unveiling of the Glick Peace Walk.
The Walnut Street portion of the trail has a different feel than the completed Alabama Street portion. The street itself is narrow and lightly trafficked by vehicles. It’s closed to autos now, but there still won’t be many when it opens back up. This helps to give the pedestrian a feeling of safety and ownership of the space. This also makes it a fine choice for the Peace Walk, which is intended to be a thoughtful exhibit.
The structures along the street are sparse, but relatively close to the right-of-way. One 3-story historic building has been unused for years. The street is also fronted by the brick Zesco building. Dig-B has some nice pictures of this portion of the trail. Apart from these 2 structures that are directly on the street, as well as the Scottish Rite Cathedral that is separated by its lawn, there are mostly non-contributing one-story buildings, and surface parking lots. There’s plenty of room for growth.
One of my favorite benefits that we receive from urban trails is their knack for shining a light on neglected or forgotten areas. The newest portion of the Cultural Trail does this nicely, while also giving us a space for reflection and inspiration.