Wednesday, May 14, 2003
An ever expanding urbal sprawl slowly moving westward across the swamp
The Publix we shop at is at the corner of US-441 and 8th, pretty much west-south-west Boca Raton. I'm not familiar with what is west of US-441 since everyone I know who lives here in Boca lives east of us (with the exception of JeffK, who lives about a block west of the Facility in the Middle of Nowhere); there hasn't been much of a reason to go west.
But curiosity got the better of me.
I turned west onto 8th and followed it out.
It was an odd neighborhood. I'm used to seeing the occational mobile home park (this is, after all, Florida) but never one this size. The entire neighborhood, going back perhaps two, three miles, consisted of nothing but mobile homes. And they had definitely seen better days too.
The road finally ended about two, three miles past US-441 in what for South Florida passes for a rual area. I turned around, and took the first street going north. I was in an exploratory mood. Very quickly the scenery changed from run-down rual to upscale yuppidom. Taking the next left (west) at a large four lane road I've never heard of before, I saw well manicured lawns and stately Royal Palms lining the street, with the occasional shopping center. It must have turned north because I found myself crossing first Palmetto Park Rd (a major east-west road here in Boca Raton) and then ending at Glades Road (another major east-west road). I then figured I'd see just how far west I could go on Glades.
Not very far. About half a mile and it turned south. There was not much here yet, but there was heavy construction on the west side, what looked to be either a huge school, or maybe a mall (hard to tell). A street sign revealed that I was on University Drive (which is a major north-south road around Ft. Lauderdale) but that it ended at Palmetto. No choice but to head back east at this point.
It was strange, like finding another city when not expecting it.