InstaBlog: Snowy Binghamton, NY

Author's note: Warning—this is a blog-style post based on a social media post. Beware typos and poorly elucidated thoughts. For more polish, perhaps try an article!

Something different: this past Friday, I was returning from a family member's funeral in upstate New York when I got stuck in the midst of the major storm hitting the East Coast. In the Catskills, that meant snow, and when I say stuck, I mean it literally. I was trapped on I-81 miles behind an accident that shut the entire road for over 2 1/2 hours before having to back off the highway. Fun times (see the last image for that)! After a white-knuckle drive on snow-covered back roads, I got back to the city of Binghamton, New York to spend the night.

So, to make the best out of a bad situation, I present to you some shots of the urbanism of Binghamton! It's a city I've driven through a hundred times, but never had the reason (or opportunity) to stop in. Given my travel schedule and the weather, I didn't have much time to explore, but did get to take some quick photos!

Quick impressions: the city is down on its luck, but not as much as I would've thought. It's doing much better than many upstate cities due to the University, which has made it very much a college town (yay craft beer, diverse young people, and pub food!). The architecture (at least, the pieces that remain and haven't been leveled for parking lots or for "renewal") is gorgeous. The little downtown still has a walkable main drag full of shops & restaurants (and a Boscov’s department store, which seems appropriately archaic), but it's surround by awful urban renewal (is there any other kind?). The mass demolition for parking lots, car roads, modernist buildings, and an arena is blatantly clear.

An interesting place that I'd love to return to sometime to truly explore. Would also love to visit its neighboring cities, Johnson City & Endicott, which were mainly built by the Endicott-Johnson shoe company as an act of welfare capitalism. But alas, that must wait for another day!

Based on an Instagram post.
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