What else is accessible along public transit?

In the last blog post, I explored access to transportation, employment, and education in New York City. As a new local to the Bay Area, I decided to explore what is available along the Bay Area Rapid Transit system (BART).

After looking at popular spots along the transit route, I found that cultural centers and hubs are often accessible via public transportation; specifically cannabis dispensaries.


Using SF Opendata, I was able to use an API to pull the locations of legally permissible marijuana clinics, most of which are located right off of BART. The data, which was geocoded was read through an API, put into a dictionary, mutated into a data frame, and then stored into a .csv, which I was able to read into CartoDB. One difficulty that I came across was cleaning the coordinates column, as the latitude/longitude were read as objects, versus strings- thus not enabling me to use the standard string cleaning data practices. However, I was able to use street addresses to circumnavigate that problem.


Given the location of the dispensaries, I wondered to whom the businesses were catered to. They obviously are catering to people who by-in-large don’t drive, but prefer to use or are more likely to use public transit. I also gleaned that by occupying spaces right along transit,┬ábusiness locales that are likely to be a bit more expensive to occupy, speaks to the priorities of the Bay Area, and the large amount of support and commerce that the dispensaries are likely to attract.

This was an interesting departure from what I expected to find, especially in juxtaposition to the kinds of things that are accessible off the NYC subway system (less culturally charged stations, more business/financial institutions).