ALEXANDRIA, VA: due to its proximity to Washington DC it could be easily written off as just a sururb for govn't workers, but it's an old compact city with its own distinct flavor. Its downtown is very walkable, the waterfront area is accessible by foot (there is no highway adjacent to / running parallel to it), the City Hall Plaza is really superb and is oriented towards pedestrians, and the town simply works like it's supposed to -- why can't we build places like this anymore?

(All photos taken by me on my recent visit to the DC area).

Location (~6 miles south of Washington DC, across the Potomac River):



Note a lack of surface parking lots in and around downtown: