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Old 11-04-2018, 10:00 PM
 
2,642 posts, read 4,819,382 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovelondon View Post
The gold standard of cities should have the following qualities below. Anything less will not impress.

(1) It should be human-scaled and built for people, rather than for cars. Less wide streets and highways, and more narrower streets and quaint alleyways. For roads that require cars to pass through, "shared streets" where people and cars intermingle can be explored. Or for those where cars are a priority, pedestrian islands to help people "jaywalk" safely.

(2) There must be great public spaces that is safe and accessible to all.

(3) Safe with low levels of crime, especially violent crime.

(4) Beautiful parks and woodlands with wildlife.

(5) Neighborhoods outside the city center (such as those in the suburbs) should be self-contained with vibrant main streets that are within a 5-minute walk for most of its residents.

(6) Diversity of neighborhoods in atmosphere and personality where each corner of the city looks and feels different from one another. From posh to scruffy but trendy. From industrial-chic to small-town chic. From the Old world to the Modern world. It must NOT feel homogenous.

(7) It has beautiful architecture that lifts the spirit

(8) It has amazing nightlife with a vibrant street life throughout the day.

(9) Extensive public transport network where terminal train stations become destinations themselves (just like Grand Central station in New York and Union Station in Toronto after a lengthy redevelopment).
I couldn't care less about any of the above stuff except for safety. I have lived in 10 different cities. My current city is the sewer of America. Orange County California is my gold standard!
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Old 11-05-2018, 09:55 AM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
1,228 posts, read 505,216 times
Reputation: 1770
Quote:
Originally Posted by capoeira View Post
I couldn't care less about any of the above stuff except for safety. I have lived in 10 different cities. My current city is the sewer of America. Orange County California is my gold standard!
Exactly, also itís pretty hard to go against Orange County. Iíve been friends with several Europeans living here and got to know many of their friends, and they love American cities. Maybe itís just Southern California because thatís all I can go off. Two of the biggest reasons Iíve taken away from them are, they arenít packed in like sardines (which is really saying something with our density), and they donít have to rely on public transportation for everything.

Personally I think public transportation is used more as a bragging tool by many on this site. While itís a nice option to have, Iíd venture to guess most championing it arenít using it much. Iíll take it a step further and say many that are wouldnít if they could afford not to. I have a trolley line a short distance from my house and itís still quicker to drive 9 out of 10 times. It is nice for baseball games if I know Iím gonna have a few or stay downtown after, but Iíd rather drive and pay for parking if Iím not because of time and convenience.
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Old 11-05-2018, 10:09 AM
 
Location: New York, NY
1,161 posts, read 655,073 times
Reputation: 1721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Lennox 70 View Post
I live in the exurbs of Baton Rouge and while I don't think this place is the "gold standard", I do think that a visit here would give a Northeast or West Coast resident or a international visitor a taste of the real America that New York City and California can't offer.

The suburbs of Columbus and Nashville are also a good taste of mainstream real America.
Lol, just because you don't live on the coasts or a major city doesn't make you any more "real American". Sarah Palin sounded stupid when she said that, and it sounds just as much when it gets repeated.
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Old 11-05-2018, 10:42 AM
 
647 posts, read 310,444 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TacoSoup View Post
Exactly, also it’s pretty hard to go against Orange County. I’ve been friends with several Europeans living here and got to know many of their friends, and they love American cities. Maybe it’s just Southern California because that’s all I can go off. Two of the biggest reasons I’ve taken away from them are, they aren’t packed in like sardines (which is really saying something with our density), and they don’t have to rely on public transportation for everything.

Personally I think public transportation is used more as a bragging tool by many on this site. While it’s a nice option to have, I’d venture to guess most championing it aren’t using it much. I’ll take it a step further and say many that are wouldn’t if they could afford not to. I have a trolley line a short distance from my house and it’s still quicker to drive 9 out of 10 times. It is nice for baseball games if I know I’m gonna have a few or stay downtown after, but I’d rather drive and pay for parking if I’m not because of time and convenience.
Apologies in advance if this may come across as condescending, and I assure you that is not my intention. Anyway, you're an American so therefore, there is a large percentage that you don't even have a passport and you have never lived outside the US (visiting as a tourist is different from living overseas). The suburban lifestyle is all you know, so you have to rely on your European friends as an anecdote.

Well, I have some American friends in London and they love not having to rely on a car to get around and not worry about parking. I even have this Italian friend who turned down a job offer in Dubai because he did not like the car-centric lifestyle over there. When he visited Dubai on a business trip, he hated that he had to drive around everywhere. Being Italian, he loves to walk everywhere -- enough to turn down a job in a city that is not walkable.

And it's not about the costs either. I have friends who are doctors, solicitors (lawyers), investment bankers, university professors, software developers -- none of them own a car. The only person I know in London who owns a car is this guy from Australia, but he cycles to work everyday. He only drives on some weekends as a hobby, the same way as how some people would go horseback-riding to unwind.

Besides, given the choice for the same amount of money between owning and maintaining a car VS travel, a lot of Londoners would rather spend it on travel. Given the monthly costs of car payments + parking + fuel + servicing + insurance, that's roughly equivalent to going to Spain for a one-week holiday. You'd be an idiot to throw money on something you don't even need in London (such as a car) when you can use that money on something else.

Last edited by ilovelondon; 11-05-2018 at 10:54 AM..
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Old 11-05-2018, 11:13 AM
 
Location: SoCal
3,768 posts, read 2,554,968 times
Reputation: 2978
Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovelondon View Post
Apologies in advance if this may come across as condescending, and I assure you that is not my intention. Anyway, you're an American so therefore, there is a large percentage that you don't even have a passport and you have never lived outside the US (visiting as a tourist is different from living overseas). The suburban lifestyle is all you know, so you have to rely on your European friends as an anecdote.

Well, I have some American friends in London and they love not having to rely on a car to get around and not worry about parking. I even have this Italian friend who turned down a job offer in Dubai because he did not like the car-centric lifestyle over there. When he visited Dubai on a business trip, he hated that he had to drive around everywhere. Being Italian, he loves to walk everywhere -- enough to turn down a job in a city that is not walkable.

And it's not about the costs either. I have friends who are doctors, solicitors (lawyers), investment bankers, university professors, software developers -- none of them own a car. The only person I know in London who owns a car is this guy from Australia, but he cycles to work everyday. He only drives on some weekends as a hobby, the same way as how some people would go horseback-riding to unwind.

Besides, given the choice for the same amount of money between owning and maintaining a car VS travel, a lot of Londoners would rather spend it on travel. Given the monthly costs of car payments + parking + fuel + servicing + insurance, that's roughly equivalent to going to Spain for a one-week holiday. You'd be an idiot to throw money on something you don't even need in London (such as a car) when you can use that money on something else.
The thing is for many of these cities not having a car works because there's not much outside the city that one would actually want to drive to the same for many american cities even some of the car dependant one's.

In SoCal for instance there's so freaking much in driving distance that public transpiration would not be able to fill the void. Every weekend I drive 2-3 hours outside of the city to experience some of the wild wild west, and many of the cities with great PT don't have anything like this worth driving to so why have a car of you're going to just stay in the city. If one didn't have a car here one
would feel disconnected from being able to leave.

I'm sorry, but Dubai, what's outside of Dubai worth driving to, I would turn it down as well so I don't blame your friend.
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Old 11-05-2018, 11:29 AM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
1,228 posts, read 505,216 times
Reputation: 1770
Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovelondon View Post
Apologies in advance if this may come across as condescending, and I assure you that is not my intention. Anyway, you're an American so therefore, there is a large percentage that you don't even have a passport and you have never lived outside the US (visiting as a tourist is different from living overseas). The suburban lifestyle is all you know, so you have to rely on your European friends as an anecdote.
Iíve traveled all throughout Europe and heard the same sentiment I spoke of from Europeans living here, including in your beloved London. No I havenít lived there but have many American friends that have, and they said tiny apartments and walking to transit centers in lousy weather got old after the honeymoon phase of living there wore off. Keep in mind just because someone doesnít agree with you doesnít mean theyíre wrong. Could it be that many Europeans that have traveled and lived in America might find our cities, and our car culture around it, with decent to good public transportation as an option more to their liking after experiencing something new? Ponder that one for a minute.
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Old 11-05-2018, 01:21 PM
 
4,480 posts, read 2,661,399 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TacoSoup View Post
Exactly, also itís pretty hard to go against Orange County. Iíve been friends with several Europeans living here and got to know many of their friends, and they love American cities. Maybe itís just Southern California because thatís all I can go off. Two of the biggest reasons Iíve taken away from them are, they arenít packed in like sardines (which is really saying something with our density), and they donít have to rely on public transportation for everything.

Personally I think public transportation is used more as a bragging tool by many on this site. While itís a nice option to have, Iíd venture to guess most championing it arenít using it much. Iíll take it a step further and say many that are wouldnít if they could afford not to. I have a trolley line a short distance from my house and itís still quicker to drive 9 out of 10 times. It is nice for baseball games if I know Iím gonna have a few or stay downtown after, but Iíd rather drive and pay for parking if Iím not because of time and convenience.
In San Diego isn't not used much. I love many things about San Diego, but it has an extremely low transit commute share. In other cities, people use transit a ton.

(I use it occasionally because I walk to most things...don't have a car.)
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Old 11-05-2018, 01:52 PM
 
647 posts, read 310,444 times
Reputation: 999
Quote:
Originally Posted by TacoSoup View Post
I’ve traveled all throughout Europe and heard the same sentiment I spoke of from Europeans living here, including in your beloved London. No I haven’t lived there but have many American friends that have, and they said tiny apartments and walking to transit centers in lousy weather got old after the honeymoon phase of living there wore off. Keep in mind just because someone doesn’t agree with you doesn’t mean they’re wrong. Could it be that many Europeans that have traveled and lived in America might find our cities, and our car culture around it, with decent to good public transportation as an option more to their liking after experiencing something new? Ponder that one for a minute.
I agree! I grew up in the suburbs of a Canadian city and I have family in California (San Diego, LA county, and Bay area) so I am familiar with life over there. I know full well what it's like to live in both North America and in Europe. So my comments are based on first-hand experiences, and not from other people.

The biggest misconception about life in Europe is how you're forced to not own a car. Your European friends could have bought a car if they really wanted to. This isn't Singapore, a capitalist city that heavily regulates car ownership for good reason. Nor are European cities like Tokyo, which has a very low modal share for motorists. As you can see from that graph, European cities have a sizable number of motorists. Maybe you should have asked your European friends why they decided not to buy a car in Europe if they love the American car culture so much. Ponder that for a minute.

And not to be condescending, but just because you went on a Contiki bus tour where you visited 15 European countries in 14 days does not make you well-traveled around Europe. Just saying.

Last edited by ilovelondon; 11-05-2018 at 02:06 PM..
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Old 11-05-2018, 03:00 PM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
1,228 posts, read 505,216 times
Reputation: 1770
Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovelondon View Post
I agree! I grew up in the suburbs of a Canadian city and I have family in California (San Diego, LA county, and Bay area) so I am familiar with life over there. I know full well what it's like to live in both North America and in Europe. So my comments are based on first-hand experiences, and not from other people.

The biggest misconception about life in Europe is how you're forced to not own a car. Your European friends could have bought a car if they really wanted to. This isn't Singapore, a capitalist city that heavily regulates car ownership for good reason. Nor are European cities like Tokyo, which has a very low modal share for motorists. As you can see from that graph, European cities have a sizable number of motorists. Maybe you should have asked your European friends why they decided not to buy a car in Europe if they love the American car culture so much. Ponder that for a minute.

And not to be condescending, but just because you went on a Contiki bus tour where you visited 15 European countries in 14 days does not make you well-traveled around Europe. Just saying.
I have. It usually came down to the cost and expense of owning one. Several did, but did not use them as much as they would like. I remember commenting on how it seems like you walk for miles on the underground in London getting to connecting trains. The waitress at the bar we were at rolled her eyes and said I know, I deal with it everyday coming to work. She had a car, I actually rode in it, but she said the cost was too high driving into the city center.

I did take my mom on a guided tour for her birthday and I had a blast even though I was the youngest by 20-30 years. All my other trips I was in my mid 20ís to early 30ís with my peers. We partied more with the locals than most could ever imagine. Iíve also visited friends that worked for me and they took all around as well, so I think I might just a bit more familiar than most.

And for the record saying your comments are based on first hand experience doesnít mean theyíre anymore right than anyone Iíve known. Just different.
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Old 11-05-2018, 03:14 PM
 
Location: Chibostoncaliseattle
2,082 posts, read 1,100,189 times
Reputation: 1851
I find salami to be the gold standard of deli meats
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