The Natick Sprawl
Sharon complains about plans for the new mega-uber-giganto Natick Mall complex:
Here in the "Golden Triangle" west of Boston, the proposed Natick Mall expansion is planned as a more-of-the-same-old enclosed shopping mall experience, sited in a particularly pedestrian unappealing way surrounded, of course, by a vast sea of asphalt. Even existing retailers in the space are complaining that the plan to build a separate addition is pedestrian-hostile, offering a potentially dangerous and certainly off-putting way of getting from the new to old shopping areas.
Elsewhere in America, though, the big trend is away from enclosed malls in favor of so-called "lifestyle centers" â€“ an open-air shopping experience that tries to create a town-square-like "sense of place" and ambiance that encourages strolling and lingering. ...
Hmm, you mean just like, oh, Shoppers World in Framingham, circa 1980? Before they turned it into a giant parking lot surrounded by big ugly concrete boxes with those stupid green faux canopy things that look more like guard towers at a maximum-security prison (whose motto should be "Shop or Die!")?