The American Planning Association has named its 30 "Great Places in America." One of the "Great Sreets" is Washington Street in the South End. Well deserved -- and as a bonus, the write-up does not use the term "SoWa."
Downtown Salem, Mass. ranks as one of the Great Neighborhoods. Elsewhere in New England, Commercial Street in Portland gets Great Street status. Waterplace Park in Providence, and Church Street Marketplace in Burlington, Vermont, both rank as Great Public Spaces.