1 Month: DC, PHI, NYC, PIT, CHI


My apologies to readers of this blog who may have noticed that I’ve slowed down; I intend to remedy this by uploading components of my thesis and also with a few planned articles to highlight lessons I’ve learned from this recent swarm of trips.

What I’ve been up to lately: Finishing and defending my thesis, graduating with my Master’s in City and Regional Planning, still working for a tax credit syndicator, following-up on Congressional lobbying efforts for Preservation Action, the inaugural convening of RBCoYP, and applying for jobs! Whew.

Here is a brief travel tease…

DC in Mid-March:




Philly in Mid-March:


NYC in Mid-March:


Pittsburgh in early April:


Chicago in mid-April:


No favorites! Besides the last city I’ve visited at the moment, whichever that is.

DC-Philly-NYC is booked

ULI Hines competition: Check (Dammit I shoulda won that). Thesis lit review: Check. Work busy season: Check. I need a vacation. I think I’ll just take one. Well, somewhat. I will be in DC for National Historic Preservation Advocacy Week, as a part of being a Preservation Action Foundation Advocacy Scholar, and thought I’d hit up Philly and NYC while I was in the area.

Student traveler tip: The cheapest way to pack as much into a vacation as possible – pack light, use surface transportation, and fly in and out of different destinations. For instance, I’m flying into DC, and out of NYC, and taking Amtrak between the two. I end up back in Columbus just the same, but get to see that much more. Oh and another tip: NEVER fly into Dulles.

Somehow I did very good with AirBNB just a month out from landing in DC. Lots of options, and lots of ways to go wrong. I decided to break it up into 2 separate bookings, for a few reasons. Foremost, 5-day availability is tough in the nation’s capitol. Also, I wanted to see more of DC, and I get bored of surroundings after about 3 days. So might as well pack it up and go see another sweet DC pad. I’m staying in Mt. Pleasant / Columbia Hts. for the first 3 days, and then in Downtown DC on U Street for the next two (closer to nightlife and all that).

airbnbphillyIn Philly, I apparently booked a place that’s farther north than I thought it was. For privacy reasons, AirBNB is a little cagey about the exact location that you’re booking, which you don’t see until you’ve paid up. I saw this one and let’s just say luckily the host’s cancelation policy was flexible. It was a brand-new townhouse with a cool deck, in a hipster area, so it seemed right up my alley – until I discovered it was more of a back alley, a little closer to a rough patch than I’d realized. North Philly is NOT all bad. It’s got a lot of soul and a lot going for it, and Temple is up there. That said, I’m only in Philly for a day and a half, in which case you really oughtta just stick to Center City.

Nonetheless I’m super excited for Philly. It seems like my kinda place. Historic. Human-scale. Diverse. Did I mention historic? And beautiful:

Of course, I hope it’s not blizzarding in Mid-March (like the last two winters up until this one, fingers crossed). That would kinda suck at that point.