Whether by foot or by car, if you've ever tried to navigate the Las Vegas strip you've likely found it difficult at best. The wide swath of gridlocked roadway surrounded by dangerously narrow sidewalks and confusing pathways is enough to challenge even sober pedestrians. The fact that most casinos' entrances are designed grandly for cars only makes matters worse when the vast majority of people are trying to walk, or at least stumble, to the next casino. It's apparent that there has never been much thought put into ways of connecting casinos nor much thought put into the idea that people might want to walk in Las Vegas in a vaguely pleasant environment. Pedestrian bridges have helped but seem to be slapped together as afterthoughts.
Good urban planning that prioritizes a safe and pleasant pedestrian environment is a key tenet of sustainability, and could do wonders for the Las Vegas strip. There's a long way to go, but Caesar's new Linq development is a step in the right direction.
The Linq is the name for a pedestrian "street" wedged between the Linq casino and the neighboring Flamingo casino. It was conceived by Ceasar's (who own both the Linq and the Flamingo) as a retail area to draw in visitors from the strip and is anchored by an enormous ferris wheel called the High Roller. The concept, therefore is to create something of a side street, safe from the chaos and traffic of the Strip. Although the Linq is still a very artificial construct more or less like an outdoor mall, it's a radical improvement to the status quo of walking in Las Vegas. The hope for me is that developments like this inspire tourists to take the notion of walkable urban spaces home with them.
The kicker? At one point during my walk along the Linq I overheard a complete stranger say, and I quote: "Oh wow, this is so nice. So much more sustainable!" ... You can't make this up. I wish I had been recording.
Learn more in my video below:
Ed disclosure: Lodging for this trip was provided by Caesar's
Nick Aster is the founder of TriplePundit.
TriplePundit.com has grown to become one of the web's leading sources of news and ideas on how business can be used to make the world a better place. It was acquired in 2017 by 3BLMedia, the leading news distribution and content marketing company focused on niche topics including sustainability, health, energy, education, philanthropy, community and other social and environmental topics.
Prior to TriplePundit Nick worked for Mother Jones magazine, successfully re-launching the magazine's online presence. He worked for TreeHugger.com, managing the technical side of the publication for 3 years and has also been an active consultant for individuals and companies entering the world of micro-publishing. He also worked for Gawker Media and Moreover Technologies in the early days of blogging.
Nick holds an MBA in sustainable management from the Presidio School of Management and graduated with a BA in History from Washington University in St. Louis.