The hub of the coffee universe

Every once in a great while, a New Yorker has an idea that even we have to admit, albeit grudgingly, is prety damn cool. So props to Cory Arcangel for figuring out Manhattan's Starbucks Center of Gravity:

As if every single Starbucks was pulling you equally in its direction, this is the place where u could stand to feel the most Starbucks power...and not just within a few blocks radius, but for the whole Island!


There are, of course, a couple of problems with that, namely: Starbucks and Manhattan. So hats off, Cory, but now let's figure out the REAL coffee hub of the universe: The point in Boston at which you are most likely to be hit by the aroma of brewing Dunkin' Donuts coffee no matter which way you turn:

First, of course, we have to find the locations of all the Dunkin' Donuts in the area. Cory describes a painstaking job involving "data mining" locations from the Starbucks Web site, then feeding their addresses into some fancy-shmancy mapping application. The Double D makes our task far easier: Go to their Store Locator, type in "Boston, MA" and you get back locations - with URLs that have their latitude and longitude embedded in them! Originally, I set it to show locations 15 miles from downtown Boston (basically, 128) - but my lack of a Dunkin' Donuts large with skim milk, no sugar kicked in and I got lazy and decided I didn't really want to deal with 251 addresses (yes, there are 251 Dunkin' Donuts within 15 miles of Government Center), so I notched it down to 10 miles and a more mangeable 182 locations.

Trouble struck after 80 locations, though - when I tried to bring up the 81st location, I got an error message. Wah! So what I'm about to reveal is based on 80 Dunkin' Donuts locations located within roughly 4.5 miles of Government Center. But first, how I figured it out: With all those latitudes and longitudes (if you want the coordinates, let me know), I basically summed up each, figured out the average, then fed that into Google Maps - to deliver that ultimate in Boston Dunkin' Donutness. And the hub of the Boston coffee universe is:

The intersection of Chestnut and Walnut streets on Beacon Hill (to be exact: the south side of Chestnut a couple doors down from Walnut).

Specifically: 4 Chestnut St.



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