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Old 02-22-2011, 07:16 AM
 
13,339 posts, read 13,516,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by worldlyman View Post
The only truly unique cities to me in America, since it's mostly American cities discussed here, are:

San Antonio
Las Vegas (and I dislike Vegas...I consider it more an adult amusement park than "city" but it is a unique "urban" space.)
New Orleans

To me, there's not a whole lot of overall distinguishing urban texture between a NY, SF and Chicago, for instance. NY is just more intense and 24 hour. Chicago has some kind of meatloaf whitebread vibe to it compared to the Big Apple. SF has a pretty topography compared to the other two. But it's just the same wide sidewalks and buildings clustered. Same type of city blocks, really. I always felt NY to be a less classy version of London...but there's great similarity.

L.A. is just an older, more dense version of Houston, Dallas and Atlanta. At least Houston mixes funky sidestreets (Midlane, Fairview, W. Alabama) with well-stocked wideass cruising boulevards (Westheimer) with intimate grids (Rice Village) to loose grids (Midtown) to futuristic (City Centre) to crazy intimate bungalow districts (Montrose) to WW II re-dux funk (Heights). Houston has the most ultimate of business districts dedicated to the medical industry. What other city has 50 story skyscrapers looming over suburban backyards? So H-town does have its own style, the argument can be made.

But Houston still has substantial overlapping similarities with L.A., Dallas, Atlanta and such. (And I appreciate Houston's eccentric personality compared to the other more pretentious Sun Belt cities...)

Miami is just a much more intense version of the Tampa Bay area. But it doesn't look terribly much different in overall topography and architecture...that typical coastal "Florida feel" is still there in Miami, Tampa Bay, Ft. Lauderdale, Sarasota/Bradenton. If anything, the most unique town in Florida is St. Augustine in terms of vibe and architecture.

"One city smells like another..." (Phil Mogg, UFO song, "Dreaming of Summer", 1995)
Basically what you're saying is all these cities have the same build? I guess according to this post Miami is still very unique. It can't be compared to cities outside the state.
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Old 02-22-2011, 05:45 PM
 
Location: The Bay and Maryland
1,363 posts, read 1,850,846 times
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Quote:
Baltimore?
Baltimore and Philly are very similar. I've heard many Baltimore natives say things like "Philly is the remix of Baltimore". This is a very apt title. Many of my friends who are Baltimore natives bounce back and forth from Philly and out here all the time and have no problems adjusting. Also, Baltimore natives are much more likely to resent DC residents. I've never heard anyone from Baltimore say anything too disparaging about Philly. In terms of the working class blue collar culture, dicey national reputations as tough guy (dare I say ghetto) cities, the dirty grungy urban East Coast feel and even the local accents and fashion trends, Baltimore and Philly are very very similar. There are certain retail stores that exist in both these cities that don't exist anywhere else (i.e. Dr. Denim, USA Boutique). Yes, Philly has more of an "up north" feel than Baltimore. The Mason Dixon line makes a difference. Philly is inevitably much bigger and more diverse (and more integrated in certain areas) than Baltimore. But Philly and Baltimore are rough-around the-edges tan Timberland boot, we'll beat-your-ass-if-you're-out-of-line (or worse!) Mid Atlantic East Coast cities that give off similar vibes.

Last edited by goldenchild08; 02-22-2011 at 05:54 PM..
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:56 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,691 posts, read 19,730,771 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by worldlyman View Post
The only truly unique cities to me in America, since it's mostly American cities discussed here, are:

San Antonio
Las Vegas (and I dislike Vegas...I consider it more an adult amusement park than "city" but it is a unique "urban" space.)
New Orleans

To me, there's not a whole lot of overall distinguishing urban texture between a NY, SF and Chicago, for instance. NY is just more intense and 24 hour. Chicago has some kind of meatloaf whitebread vibe to it compared to the Big Apple. SF has a pretty topography compared to the other two. But it's just the same wide sidewalks and buildings clustered. Same type of city blocks, really. I always felt NY to be a less classy version of London...but there's great similarity.

L.A. is just an older, more dense version of Houston, Dallas and Atlanta. At least Houston mixes funky sidestreets (Midlane, Fairview, W. Alabama) with well-stocked wideass cruising boulevards (Westheimer) with intimate grids (Rice Village) to loose grids (Midtown) to futuristic (City Centre) to crazy intimate bungalow districts (Montrose) to WW II re-dux funk (Heights). Houston has the most ultimate of business districts dedicated to the medical industry. What other city has 50 story skyscrapers looming over suburban backyards? So H-town does have its own style, the argument can be made.

But Houston still has substantial overlapping similarities with L.A., Dallas, Atlanta and such. (And I appreciate Houston's eccentric personality compared to the other more pretentious Sun Belt cities...)

Miami is just a much more intense version of the Tampa Bay area. But it doesn't look terribly much different in overall topography and architecture...that typical coastal "Florida feel" is still there in Miami, Tampa Bay, Ft. Lauderdale, Sarasota/Bradenton. If anything, the most unique town in Florida is St. Augustine in terms of vibe and architecture.

"One city smells like another..." (Phil Mogg, UFO song, "Dreaming of Summer", 1995)
I visited downtown Houston in streetview and it looked totally deserted, not even any shops, just parking lots, factories and towers. I might be passing through Houston in June though so maybe I'll get to really see it.

But yes, New Orleans and Vegas are unique in the truest sense of the word.
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Old 02-22-2011, 11:38 PM
 
999 posts, read 474,610 times
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My list would be:

Las Vegas: There really is not other city like it in the world.

New Orleans: French meets the Deep South, can't compare.

Washington, D.C.: A capital city like no other.

I find other cities to have comparable vibes and qualities of other cities.

For instance, New York is unique, but I feel offers a similar experience of cities like London and Tokyo, super cosmopolitan, super dense, huge population and global. New York is unique, but no THAT unique. Cities like Boston, Philly, Baltimore, are very colonial, IMO beautiful cities, but not really that unique.
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Old 02-23-2011, 12:10 AM
 
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Oklahoma City... just kidding.

NYC and Miami come to mind. San Francisco and New Orleans too.
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Old 02-23-2011, 12:46 AM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
10,407 posts, read 13,949,114 times
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I'd say Miami, New Orleans, and Honolulu are the most unique overall because no other large cities/metro's have a similar culture. I think local culture set places apart more so than buildings, development patterns, weather, and geography.
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Old 02-23-2011, 01:24 AM
 
2,914 posts, read 1,180,837 times
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Why aren't people mentioning smaller cities, it is like wrestling at a lower weight class. They can still be plenty unique.

It is not about what they offer, but what they are.

Duluth comes to mind, Des Moines, and Buffalo as well.
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Old 02-23-2011, 02:35 AM
 
819 posts, read 1,183,592 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
I visited downtown Houston in streetview and it looked totally deserted, not even any shops, just parking lots, factories and towers. I might be passing through Houston in June though so maybe I'll get to really see it.

But yes, New Orleans and Vegas are unique in the truest sense of the word.
Well, when you live here in Houston...there is a complexity with downtown Houston that out-of-towners don't really get.

Houston has a downtown but other areas of interest in the sprawl.

There are shops, clubs, bars, pizza joints, culture venues and etc. in downtown Houston, for the record though.
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Old 02-23-2011, 02:38 AM
 
819 posts, read 1,183,592 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by polo89 View Post
Basically what you're saying is all these cities have the same build? I guess according to this post Miami is still very unique. It can't be compared to cities outside the state.
It does have qualities that are similar to L.A. and Phoenix, in my perspective.

But Miami does have its unique qualities.

In terms of truly unique visuals...
definitely

Las Vegas
New Orleans
San Antonio

Simply, there are no other cities that are like them.

Cities in general have overlapping similarities. NY is not utterly different than SF and Chicago in city block style, for example.
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Old 02-23-2011, 10:14 AM
 
13,339 posts, read 13,516,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by worldlyman View Post
It does have qualities that are similar to L.A. and Phoenix, in my perspective.

But Miami does have its unique qualities.

In terms of truly unique visuals...
definitely

Las Vegas
New Orleans
San Antonio

Simply, there are no other cities that are like them.

Cities in general have overlapping similarities. NY is not utterly different than SF and Chicago in city block style, for example.
Indeed.
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