Giddings Plaza in Chicago was one of only 13 blocks among 46,311 in the city to possess every quality of a great main street. (Andrew Seaman / Flickr)

Quantifying the death of the classic American main street

A Sidewalk Talk Q&A with urban scholar Emily Talen on why these streets are vanishing — and what cities can do about it.

Eric Jaffe
Mar 16, 2018 · 10 min read
The presence of a surface parking lot would keep a corner like Balbo and Wabash (above) from being a classic main street. Parking requirements can also undermine the ability of small businesses to move onto — or expand on—a given block. (asrai / Flickr)

Sidewalk Talk

Where technologists and urbanists discuss the future of cities.