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View Poll Results: Is Philadelphia more urban than Chicago?
More urban 46 24.60%
Less urban 100 53.48%
About the same/don't know/don't care 41 21.93%
Voters: 187. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-10-2015, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Center City, Philadelphia
4,561 posts, read 2,525,464 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiTownWonder View Post
Most ridicules thing I've seen on here in a while, sorry.
even if you travel 2.5 miles south in Chicago you would still get this
https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8424..._hCt8K5Wuw!2e0
Oh don't get so defensive ha. I just was pointing out detached housing is way more prevelant in Chicago then it is in Philadelphia.
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Old 04-10-2015, 10:57 AM
 
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
5,602 posts, read 3,475,333 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_curious_urbanist View Post
Based on news and Census estimates it seems that Philly is rapidly growing in population while Chicago is stagnant or still shrinking (city limits only). Also, the urban fabric of Philly looks denser and more seamless than Chicago's messed up layout with freeways and empty space separating downtown from the rest of the city. But a lot of people on this forum seem to believe that Chicago is denser and more urban than Philadelphia even if Google Earth images show the contrary.
Why is there so much "little man syndrome" coming from Philly boasters these days, aimed specifically at Chicago? I dont get it.
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Old 04-10-2015, 11:09 AM
 
9,701 posts, read 6,683,467 times
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I would say, yes, Philly is more urban. It's clearly smaller than Chicago, but also clearly more urban. It was much bigger in the 19th century, and has the packed-in rowhouse feel, so is probably structurally the second most urban city in the U.S.

What would compel anyone to say that Chicago looks more urban? I'm not quite getting it. I guess people haven't visited these cities, and just figure the bigger city is more urban? Or maybe some people think that more skyscrapers = more urban?

Chicago has much more of a big city feel, but it also feels much more spread out than the older Northeast corridor cities.
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Old 04-10-2015, 11:29 AM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
27,621 posts, read 24,826,243 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NOLA101 View Post
I would say, yes, Philly is more urban. It's clearly smaller than Chicago, but also clearly more urban. It was much bigger in the 19th century, and has the packed-in rowhouse feel, so is probably structurally the second most urban city in the U.S.

What would compel anyone to say that Chicago looks more urban? I'm not quite getting it. I guess people haven't visited these cities, and just figure the bigger city is more urban? Or maybe some people think that more skyscrapers = more urban?

Chicago has much more of a big city feel, but it also feels much more spread out than the older Northeast corridor cities.
I agree with this. I guess it comes down to how much you value verticality versus condenseness in the built environment. Chicago has residential areas with tall buildings, but the built environment lacks the condenseness (and the mix of uses ) that would make them feel more like, say, Harlem. Philly has more of NYC's condenseness, but doesn't match the density of either NYC or Chicago because of shorter buildings.

Having to choose between the two, I would say Philly, and not so much because I'm a homer, but because many parts of the city feel cramped.
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Old 04-10-2015, 11:50 AM
 
Location: Chicago
589 posts, read 584,092 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NOLA101 View Post
I would say, yes, Philly is more urban. It's clearly smaller than Chicago, but also clearly more urban. It was much bigger in the 19th century, and has the packed-in rowhouse feel, so is probably structurally the second most urban city in the U.S.

What would compel anyone to say that Chicago looks more urban? I'm not quite getting it. I guess people haven't visited these cities, and just figure the bigger city is more urban? Or maybe some people think that more skyscrapers = more urban?

Chicago has much more of a big city feel, but it also feels much more spread out than the older Northeast corridor cities.
Ill agree...
the density of american cities diminishes ans you head westward. San Francisco is an oddball though.
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Old 04-10-2015, 11:56 AM
 
Location: Chicago
589 posts, read 584,092 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thedirtypirate View Post
Oh don't get so defensive ha. I just was pointing out detached housing is way more prevelant in Chicago then it is in Philadelphia.
Sorry. and yes almost all the houses in Chicago have some sort of space in between them, but honestly i think this: https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8049...Q9lJCcHPqw!2e0

is more beautiful than this:
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Ph...f514d88c3e58c1
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Old 04-10-2015, 02:31 PM
 
11,016 posts, read 21,587,474 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiTownWonder View Post
Sorry. and yes almost all the houses in Chicago have some sort of space in between them, but honestly i think this: https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8049...Q9lJCcHPqw!2e0

is more beautiful than this:
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Ph...f514d88c3e58c1
Here's my house in Chicago (won't say which one of course). There are spaces, but many times the spaces are small. I think of this as quite urban. I love visiting Philly, but honestly the row house neighborhoods are normally not my cup of tea. There's so much concrete and few trees or greenery. One thing I like about Chicago is that almost all street are tree lined and there's the little strip of green between the street and the sidewalk.

https://maps.google.com/maps?ll=41.9...82.45,,0,-5.67

24% of the housing stock in Chicago is single family homes - bungalows. They tend to obviously have more space, although are still tightly packed for what would be a moden subdivision these days.
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Old 04-10-2015, 02:40 PM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
14,330 posts, read 19,031,218 times
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To me, "urban" has less to do with density, and more to do with feel. On this front, there is no way that Philly can compare to a mighty city like Chicago. Not even close. It's like comparing Philly to NYC.
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Old 04-10-2015, 02:52 PM
 
9,701 posts, read 6,683,467 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LexusNexus View Post
To me, "urban" has less to do with density, and more to do with feel. On this front, there is no way that Philly can compare to a mighty city like Chicago. Not even close. It's like comparing Philly to NYC.
Philly is closer to NYC in feel than Chicago is to NYC, so no.
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Old 04-10-2015, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Boston Metrowest (via the Philly area)
4,272 posts, read 7,196,776 times
Reputation: 3965
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiTownWonder View Post
Sorry. and yes almost all the houses in Chicago have some sort of space in between them, but honestly i think this: https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8049...Q9lJCcHPqw!2e0

is more beautiful than this:
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Ph...f514d88c3e58c1
As I noted in another thread, I will give props to Chicago for doing such a splendid job of incorporating more greenery into it streets--it goes a very long way in improving aesthetics. In Philadlephia, there are some wonderful, tree-filled neighborhoods, but the city has much progress to make.

Rowhouse neighborhoods definitely aren't for everyone, but I think their appeal among many people is that they are superb for providing for a human-scaled, close-knit "neighborhoody" vibe--all without as much nearly as much auto-oriented disruption as other cities.

With proper investment and revitalization, these neighborhoods are perfect for encouraging street life.
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