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Old 03-06-2017, 04:46 PM
 
Location: Toronto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natnasci View Post
Seems busy enough to me, not NYC busy, but because you have thousands upon thousands living in a small area downtown area that walk a lot, it certainly isn't dead.
I would agree. For a city of 2.5 million in its metro Vancouver DT ped vibrancy is quite strong for a Canamerican city. Some streets are pretty dead but the same can be said for every city. I like having a mix of busy and quiet arterials. Toronto's commercial arterials are usually quite busy but the residential one's quiet. Its a nice reprieve actually!

As for the black and white thing you said I couldn't agree more lol.. 010101010101 - If you aren't 1 you're 0
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Old 03-07-2017, 04:05 AM
 
Location: Toronto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botticelli View Post

I am frequently accused of picking on Canadian cities, but what I said is very objective. I just can't stand all the compliments about the "vibrancy" thing, considering the level of such vibrancy is not impressive whatsoever in the context of these cities' population. Yes, a city of 6M rivals cities with 1.5m in terms of street vibrancy, is it something to celebrate? You have been to Lisbon for example, a city half of Toronto's size, are the street vibrancy even on the same level? I went in February and I think it is busier than Toronto overall on any day.
Sorry I didn't answer your Lisbon question. I'll also add in some more commentary to explain things as I see them on the topic of street vibrancy and just general travel impressions. There are so many factors that are behind it! If you ask me does Toronto or any city in Canada/U.S rival the main cities of Europe in terms of vibrancy I would say no with the exception of NYC (and that is because of its size and global touristic appeal). Would I say generally speaking that smaller cities in Europe are more vibrant than larger cities in Canada/U.S - generally yes.

To get back to your specific question about whether Lisbon rivals or exceeds Toronto in terms of overall being busier/vibrant. Certainly in February yes without exception or doubt. Realistically, the cold simply naws at street vibrancy. Would it surprise me if it the street vibrancy in Lisbon is more than Toronto overall. No and i'd say the general vibrancy of Lisbon is on a higher level than Toronto day in day out. Lisbon like many cities in Europe are built to human scale much more effectively than in our neck of the woods.

Let's not forget something important about Europe as well - tourism is HUGE. Its very easy and cheap for someone to hop on an EasyJet or Ryanair flight from say London or Paris and visit Lisbon or Marseille etc.. When I go on tours in Euro cities it is VERY common to see representative from all over Europe on the tour. You may see a few Americans/Canadians/Australians but by and large its Europeans/Brexit. They simply get around and visit other countries on their continent way more than Canadians and Americans do on ours - and they are much more likely go on short urban trips. As you know, they also get generally more vaca time than we do collectively. We have friends in St Petersburg and every second weekend they are somewhere in Europe - Krakow this weekend, Sofia the next etc etc. Of course cities in Europe are absolutely fascinating. I mean as a continent I don't think any packs in such an amazing variety of beautiful cities as in Europe anywhere on earth.

So this combination of cheap travel, a strong tourism climate within Europe, generally decent weather in the winter and a more street friendly culture among Europeans in general will certainly factor in strongly towards this.. I also think that a major difference I've observed in places outside N.A including Europe is that families go out together in higher numbers than here. Even teenagers and I mean like 16, 17 y.o with their parents/family will just go out for a stroll instead of watching nonsensical TV night after night. In our culture when would you hear a 16 year old saying to his parents, mom/dad lets go grab a coffee and scone at Balzac's in the Distillery.. In Europe though it is much more common for this to happen and they will go to a market or a café/restaurant and just enjoy a stroll and talk to one another - like real human interaction!

So do I think Toronto (Old Toronto not North York or Etobicoke Toronto) is busy and vibrant, yes but I put it in perspective to our part of the world. You'd certainly feel much more depressed in other large cities in Canamerica - I could only imagine what you'd be writing in these threads if you lived in Dallas, Pheonix, Seattle, Atlanta etc.... When Toronto is at its busiest it is quite bustling but it can vary due to what is going on in the city, the weather etc. I think as the city expands its transit to more acceptable levels within the city and on a regional basis, it will attract more people to the core as it will be easier to get to/fro. As I said as well, y.o.y population growth in the core is growing considerably so I think increasingly over time it will become the more bustling place you like but will we ever have that street life culture that exists to the extent in Europe or Asia etc - probably not and I think the main reason actually is fundamentally cultural. Of course this can change but with the way technology is going - umm yeah.

Last edited by fusion2; 03-07-2017 at 04:32 AM..
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Old 03-07-2017, 05:05 AM
 
1,147 posts, read 414,228 times
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Vancouver is a better daytime city, while Toronto is more fun at night. Both are good for North American standards. Internationally, I think Canada's major cities are somewhat underrated.
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Old 03-07-2017, 09:22 AM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
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Rereading this again, and I wonder if "pedestrian crush" is really that desirable a thing to most people around the world. (Even those actually living in megacities and liking it there.) I mean sure, lots of people think it's cool to visit cities that have that energy, but to live everyday?


I've heard lots of people from lots of places say they appreciate living in a quiet place in the country. Including people formerly from huge megacities.


But while I've heard lots of people who like living in the city because it's exciting and there is lots going on, I've never heard anyone say that they really liked the "pedestrian crush".


To my knowledge almost no one really likes that specific aspect of big city life. Even if some of us want to use it as a measure of vibrancy.
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Old 03-07-2017, 09:35 AM
 
Location: Toronto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
Rereading this again, and I wonder if "pedestrian crush" is really that desirable a thing to most people around the world. (Even those actually living in megacities and liking it there.) I mean sure, lots of people think it's cool to visit cities that have that energy, but to live everyday?


I've heard lots of people from lots of places say they appreciate living in a quiet place in the country. Including people formerly from huge megacities.


But while I've heard lots of people who like living in the city because it's exciting and there is lots going on, I've never heard anyone say that they really liked the "pedestrian crush".


To my knowledge almost no one really likes that specific aspect of big city life. Even if some of us want to use it as a measure of vibrancy.
I think the most alive places in the world you need to have a certain 'busyness' to it in order for there to be excitement and buzz. There is something about it that is just incredible. Vibrant means full of energy so a quiet place while it may be charming and interesting isn't really vibrant in my mind so yeah - you need a certain 'ped crush' (I saw that term on these forums actually I didn't make it up lol) if you will so that it matches the definition and makes a place exciting.

Certainly the world is urbanizing more and more these days for a number of reasons so ultimately I think its just a reality that cities become larger and there is more 'buzz' - busy alone or ped crush alone doesn't mean interesting either though.

Anyway this is C/D AJ and you know how the measuring stick comes out lol.. Look at the vs threads in here where people actually use stats to determine how busy intersections are in their city vs others to prove their city is more 'vibrant'. It can get pretty darn hardcore and actually silly but a lot of those people are attracted to these forums. As for me i'm fine with Toronto's DT core becoming super busy. There's enough quiet place in our country that our largest cities can have core areas that are bonkers

Last edited by fusion2; 03-07-2017 at 09:46 AM..
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Old 03-07-2017, 10:21 AM
 
Location: Vancouver
11,378 posts, read 7,830,861 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fusion2 View Post
I would agree. For a city of 2.5 million in its metro Vancouver DT ped vibrancy is quite strong for a Canamerican city. Some streets are pretty dead but the same can be said for every city. I like having a mix of busy and quiet arterials. Toronto's commercial arterials are usually quite busy but the residential one's quiet. Its a nice reprieve actually!

As for the black and white thing you said I couldn't agree more lol.. 010101010101 - If you aren't 1 you're 0
I have travelled to a few cities in my time. Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal, London UK, Edinburg, Paris, Lyon, Vienna, Berlin, Rome, Florence, Athens, Amsterdam, and on and on.

A real mix of busy, not so busy, old, newer etc, so I do have some idea where Vancouver fits. My travel is lacking in Asia, but I've talked to enough people from different parts and people who have been, plus movies and photos, to get an idea just how busy those places are compared to Vancouver.

So when Botti comes around and says he isn't judging a city for not being busy, but then admits a busy city is his preference, he is trying to be both sides of the coin. Calling Vancouver a fishing village was rather disingenuous.

I get it. I would find some places too quiet for my taste. I happen to like the excitement of London or NYC, but not to live there. I find Vancouver suits me fine, and is a good mix of urban and non-urban.

One persons " dead " is another's " peaceful " LOL.

It's one thing I like about cities, walk off a main shopping street and you are in a different world. Walk down Robson Street, turn south on Bute, and boom. Trees, gardens, and less people and cars. Keep going a few more blocks and sit on the beach and still be considered downtown.

A good mix.
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Old 03-07-2017, 10:32 AM
 
Location: Toronto
12,581 posts, read 10,434,293 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natnasci View Post
I have travelled to a few cities in my time. Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal, London UK, Edinburg, Paris, Lyon, Vienna, Berlin, Rome, Florence, Athens, Amsterdam, and on and on.

A real mix of busy, not so busy, old, newer etc, so I do have some idea where Vancouver fits. My travel is lacking in Asia, but I've talked to enough people from different parts and people who have been, plus movies and photos, to get an idea just how busy those places are compared to Vancouver.

So when Botti comes around and says he isn't judging a city for not being busy, but then admits a busy city is his preference, he is trying to be both sides of the coin. Calling Vancouver a fishing village was rather disingenuous.

I get it. I would find some places too quiet for my taste. I happen to like the excitement of London or NYC, but not to live there. I find Vancouver suits me fine, and is a good mix of urban and non-urban.

One persons " dead " is another's " peaceful " LOL.

It's one thing I like about cities, walk off a main shopping street and you are in a different world. Walk down Robson Street, turn south on Bute, and boom. Trees, gardens, and less people and cars. Keep going a few more blocks and sit on the beach and still be considered downtown.

A good mix.
I think we need to use the reasonable person test for something like this. Any reasonable person would say that Vancouver's DT is busy and dynamic. Anyone who says its like a small sea-side fishing port would probably just get a lot of this

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Old 03-07-2017, 12:50 PM
 
10,847 posts, read 10,572,735 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fusion2 View Post
Any reasonable person would say that Vancouver's DT is busy and dynamic.
okkkk. You are Canadian, I get it.

I am not going to deny your argument that dt vancouver is busy and dynamic, because there is no fixed definition for those adjectives (some think DT ottawa is dynamic too, some even say DT Victoria is vibrant, what can I say) but I can say about 85% of cities with similar sized cities (excluding those struggling with poverty) in this world are more busy and dynamic than Vancouver. Shown below. You compare it with cities of similar size, not villages with 6000 residents.



You only have to go out and visit those places at 9 pm on any Tuesday evening. You are well traveled and you should know. I think it is being Canadian that makes it difficult for you to admit that.
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Old 03-07-2017, 01:05 PM
 
10,847 posts, read 10,572,735 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natnasci View Post
I have travelled to a few cities in my time. Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal, London UK, Edinburg, Paris, Lyon, Vienna, Berlin, Rome, Florence, Athens, Amsterdam, and on and on.

A real mix of busy, not so busy, old, newer etc, so I do have some idea where Vancouver fits. My travel is lacking in Asia, but I've talked to enough people from different parts and people who have been, plus movies and photos, to get an idea just how busy those places are compared to Vancouver.

So when Botti comes around and says he isn't judging a city for not being busy, but then admits a busy city is his preference, he is trying to be both sides of the coin. Calling Vancouver a fishing village was rather disingenuous.

I get it. I would find some places too quiet for my taste. I happen to like the excitement of London or NYC, but not to live there. I find Vancouver suits me fine, and is a good mix of urban and non-urban.

One persons " dead " is another's " peaceful " LOL.

It's one thing I like about cities, walk off a main shopping street and you are in a different world. Walk down Robson Street, turn south on Bute, and boom. Trees, gardens, and less people and cars. Keep going a few more blocks and sit on the beach and still be considered downtown.

A good mix.
I completely agree with you and I respect that too. Not everyone has to like large bustling cities. I know you love Vancouver, a city perfect for your taste and I am happy for you.

Among the cities you mentioned, more than half of them are in North America - you know, the boring land with very low bar for urban vibrancy, so you should know your judgment about Vancouver should be adjusted quite a bit. Calgary, Phoenix? Come on, they are hardly "cities" - just places with large population who sleep in the suburbs.

OK, Vienna, Lyon, Amsterdam all have more or less similar population as Vancouver, how did you find them? In Vancouver, making a turn from Robson and you are in the tranquil nature, great. What if I want to explore another street as busy as Robson? sorry, option not available. There is only Robson. The fact is, majority part of downtown Vancouver is like what you see after making a turn from Robson, and it is hard to call that "busy and dynamic".

I am not saying it is a bad thing, but to call Vancouver a vibrant urban centre, that's disingenuous. And someone who never went outside North America say it, I understand. There are people from the GTA who think Yonge/Eglinton looks like a big city too.
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Old 03-07-2017, 04:16 PM
 
Location: Vancouver
11,378 posts, read 7,830,861 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botticelli View Post
I completely agree with you and I respect that too. Not everyone has to like large bustling cities. I know you love Vancouver, a city perfect for your taste and I am happy for you.

Among the cities you mentioned, more than half of them are in North America - you know, the boring land with very low bar for urban vibrancy, so you should know your judgment about Vancouver should be adjusted quite a bit. Calgary, Phoenix? Come on, they are hardly "cities" - just places with large population who sleep in the suburbs.

OK, Vienna, Lyon, Amsterdam all have more or less similar population as Vancouver, how did you find them? In Vancouver, making a turn from Robson and you are in the tranquil nature, great. What if I want to explore another street as busy as Robson? sorry, option not available. There is only Robson. The fact is, majority part of downtown Vancouver is like what you see after making a turn from Robson, and it is hard to call that "busy and dynamic".

I am not saying it is a bad thing, but to call Vancouver a vibrant urban centre, that's disingenuous. And someone who never went outside North America say it, I understand. There are people from the GTA who think Yonge/Eglinton looks like a big city too.
I mentioned, Calgary, Phoenix as examples of cities that I don't consider as dynamic as Vancouver. In other words, I was trying to say that I've been to enough cities to know the differences.

Only Robson? In downtown for shops and restaurants,you have Georgia Street, Denman Street, Davie Street, then all the shopping streets in Yaletown. Granville Street, both downtown and South Granville, plus a few side streets, like Alberni which has Tiffany's, Brooks Brothers, etc.

Downtown is not all of Vancouver as you know, and is only a few K wide and tall. The rest of the shopping areas, some a short walk over False Creek are 4th Ave, Broadway, 41st in Kerrisdale, 10th ave in Point Grey. Eastward you have Main Street which a more Hipster vibe on the lower end, and Indian further up. Commercial Drive more bohemian. Plus Chinatown and Gastown...and others.

This all within a 8 kilometres. Further out even more.


Only Robson indeed?

EDIT:

How did I find them. Amsterdam and Lyon I like them better than staid Vienna, although Vienna has some nice parks and access to nature...Vienna Woods for example. It's a pretty city, one in which I've only been once, but will return. I stayed with locals so got a taste of life there and it was pleasant.

Lyon I've been a couple times, passed though several times. The centre is lovely and it's a city that also has nice parks. The Parc Miribel Jonage, a huge parc is more natural than Tete D'or, but it's not real wilderness.
The city is vibrant, and pretty. Definitely a place where one can have a good life. I'd still miss the ocean, but the Med is not too, too far and Switzerland is close by as well.

Amsterdam, I've been to the most because of friends. About 13 times. It will always have a special place in my heart, since it was my first European City many years ago. The historic Centrum always charms, but it does get claustrophobic after a while. The Damrak is a tourists nightmare, and best avoided, as are some of the touristy shopping streets. It just seem stop have gotten more and more touristy.
I've stayed in the centre in hotels, with locals, and outside the centre a few metro stops away. Outside of the city, you have bland, uninspired housing blocks.
The saving grace is you can hop on your bike and visit many close by smaller towns that are charming.

I used to think I could live there, but as with the other two cities I would miss the emptier spaces that BC affords and the ease of just walking to a mountain, or beach while living in an urban environment.

As for which is more vibrant? Amsterdam over Lyon, Lyon over Vienna.

Last edited by Natnasci; 03-07-2017 at 05:27 PM..
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