Richmond Ranks 

How are we doing in fast food, trains and manliness?

click to enlarge SCOTT ELMQUIST
  • Scott Elmquist

Richmond may fancy itself as a terrific restaurant town, but is it?

Consider it one of the more perplexing conundrums in the annals of Richmond rankings: In 2011, the Daily Beast ranked the venerable Capital of the Confederacy third in the country for the number of fast food restaurants per capita.

Richmond may be a foodie's dream, but it's also a great place to scarf down nuggets and fries. With 274 fast food outlets, according to the 2011 rankings, that gives Richmond 134 per 100,000 residents. The first- and second-ranked fast food towns are understandable. Orlando, Fla., is chockablock with tourists and theme parks. Louisville, Ky., is the corporate home of Kentucky Fried Chicken, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut.

Admittedly, rankings can be a slippery proposition. Sperling's Best Places ranks Richmond No. 22 out of 100 in "manliness"; the 69th "least stressful" and No. 10 among middle-sized cities for working from home via Internet.

Richmonders are really getting into railroading, too, albeit from a small base. Amtrak's Staples Mill Station showed the highest percentage increase in passengers — a 7.9 percent spike — in the country last year. That's better than such high-volume centers as New York's Penn Station, Washington's Union Station and Chicago. It could be that Richmonders like Amtrak's new early-morning trains to Washington. The addition of daily service to Norfolk through Richmond helps.

As for the fast-food conundrum: Why would Richmond have roughly double the fast-food saturation rate than somewhat similar Upper South cities as Greensboro, N.C. (No. 14), Chesapeake (No. 19) or Raleigh (No. 23)?

If there's any consolation, all of these places rate Subway as the most common fast-foodery. If it has to be fast, at least they're eating fresh.


Latest in News and Features

Comments (5)

Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

More by Peter Galuszka

Connect with Style Weekly

Most Popular Stories

  • Rooms with a View

    Rooms with a View

    A Charlottesville designer channels American realist paintings and the 1920s and ’30s for an art collector’s penthouse. 
    • Mar 2, 2021
  • Building the Future

    Building the Future

    Veteran builder Bryan Traylor, owner of Unlimited Renovations, talks about how the pandemic has affected his work.
    • Mar 2, 2021
  • Slim Pickings

    Slim Pickings

    A recent Richmond transplant’s home-buying pandemic story.
    • Mar 2, 2021
  • How the Hours Pass

    How the Hours Pass

    Pandemic design means blending comfort with function – and beauty.
    • Mar 2, 2021
  • More »

Copyright © 2021 Style Weekly
Richmond's alternative for news, arts, culture and opinion
All rights reserved
Powered by Foundation