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Old 10-17-2012, 12:16 PM
 
Location: Atlanta, GA (Dunwoody)
2,047 posts, read 3,880,142 times
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Time and time again on these threads I see posters going on and on about density, and frankly I'm confused. Are we advocating density for density's sake, or is there some inherent value in density onto itself? Posters keep referring to other large cities that are totally unlike Atlanta in that they boomed in a different era or there are geographic boundaries. I mean, y'all know I'm no fan of Atlanta. One of my biggest problems with this city is that are are entirely too many people. The only time I really like it here is during holidays when what seems like half the population evacuates! So, to me the idea of all these people packed in on top of each other all but gives me panic attacks. So again, why density? Why is it so desirable? Make your pitch.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:21 PM
 
27,834 posts, read 24,888,826 times
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I personally don't advocate for insane density levels (at least by American standards), which would be next to impossible in Atlanta anyway, but in general, greater density, both structural and population, creates more synergy and a greater sense of place for starters. It's no surprise that the most popular places to visit also happen to be among the most dense and walkable. Downtown Decatur and the Historic Marietta Square are more popular than outlying suburban strip malls for these reasons.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:22 PM
 
28,178 posts, read 24,730,127 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoslynHolcomb View Post
So, to me the idea of all these people packed in on top of each other all but gives me panic attacks. So again, why density? Why is it so desirable? Make your pitch.
In my opinion it's a mistake to think of density as a holy grail of some sort. Like just about everything else, it's how you do it.

Bad density and mindless crowding are no fun at all.

On the other hand, intelligent, compact living can make a lot of sense. Travel is easier, school, shopping and other amenities are more convenient, and you have more public greenspace since it's not all in private yards.

A lot of people say that good density also helps give them a sense of place and community.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:26 PM
 
Location: ATL
4,688 posts, read 6,415,425 times
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I like to be able to walk miles in cities with other people walking, restaurants, bars, etc open. Technically we can do that now from from 14th st to the CNN Center but we still have a long way to go
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:26 PM
 
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Density creates walkability and vibrancy in a neighborhood. Look at Little 5 points. A small, but dense urban district that has life, energy, and things going on. It encourages more people to walk and get active...to not use the car which has negative effects across the board, not only on the environment, but in the wallets of drivers. Do young people want to go to a bar that's out in the middle of nowhere, or a dense neighborhood that has multiple bars and clubs in one area? Now imagine this over a decent size area in Atlanta. It creates a city of life and advocates more projects like the Beltline which are one of a kind.

Look at neighborhoods in the suburbs. Quiet and nothing going on. You might as well live in the country. It's boring.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:27 PM
 
Location: Kirkwood
22,209 posts, read 16,223,527 times
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Density supports more people and businesses while using less resources. There is a point in density where it is more efficient, but being too dense can become expensive too. Density allows more people to use alternate forms of transportation and not be dependent on single-occupancy vehicles. Cities are encourage density, through zoning, but it is something that cannot be forced. Then you have empty, tall buildings. Not every area needs to be dense. It makes sense to have the urban centers, Downtown, Midtown, Buckhead more dense than majority residential areas and have those areas served by transit. But more suburban areas can be dense at major intersections and transit stations. If commuter rail is built, zone dense-mixed use with 1-2 blocks of rail stations. That way users can shop at retail stores in 1 trip to or from home.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:27 PM
 
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Actually a lot of urban planners do advocate for density as a holy grail. Smart density is basically the Vancouver Model.

Arguments for are that it's better for the environment, it's easier to provide services using fewer resources to more people, cheaper to provide things like parks, power, water, sewage, transportation, pollution control due to economies of scale. Arguments against basically boil down to it makes people neurotic and restricts personal freedoms.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:30 PM
 
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What makes NYC also exciting is the fact you can walk in many districts where there are also many other people walking. To me, it just makes me feel really good. Atlanta does not have something like this except downtown/midtown during the day or midtown on weekend nights.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:39 PM
 
28,178 posts, read 24,730,127 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rzzz View Post
Actually a lot of urban planners do advocate for density as a holy grail.
Well, if they are advocating density per se as a holy grail then I'd say they are way off track. You've gotta have the water, sanitation, transportation, healthcare, communication and other infrastructure to support it.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:41 PM
 
2,407 posts, read 2,615,214 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rzzz View Post
Actually a lot of amateur CityData urban planners do advocate for density as a holy grail.
Fixed that for you.
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