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View Poll Results: What is Kansas City?
Midwestern 94 61.44%
Transitional from Midwest to West 53 34.64%
Western 6 3.92%
Voters: 153. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-30-2017, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Center City
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieOlSkool View Post
Doesn't St. Louis have varied topography? Cincinnati does as well. But I do think that as a whole most major Midwest cities are flat. Chicago, Indianapolis, and Detroit certainly are as is Cleveland but Cleveland metro has some changes in elevation. But I will say that yes most really large Midwest city centers are flat.
Yes, you are right. I tend to stereotype the Midwest cities as flat, but those you mention do have some topography to them. OTOH, most of the big eastern cities are fairly flat, though my own city, Philadelphia has lots of ups and downs once to get north of Center City.
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Old 01-30-2017, 02:42 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Pine to Vine View Post
Yes, you are right. I tend to stereotype the Midwest cities as flat, but those you mention do have some topography to them. OTOH, most of the big eastern cities are fairly flat, though my own city, Philadelphia has lots of ups and downs once to get north of Center City.
Boston and New York are somewhat flat (especially NYC). Really only Staten Island has varying topography but it definitely isn't representative of NYC as whole. Philly however is right outside the Piedmont so it makes sense that once you get out of the city center that the elevation would change drastically.

However most coastal cities being on a coastal plain will be flat. Of course the coastal plain is the exception and not the rule for the Northeast and Southeast. Much of the Northeast is either Piedmont or mountainous terrain just like the Southeast. Same goes with the West. So of course this leaves the Midwest as possibly the flattest region and honestly being that no major mountain chain runs through it, it makes sense.

So as a whole the Midwest is FLATTER for sure compared to the other regions of the country. It just isn't all a plain as people think.
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Old 01-30-2017, 08:22 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieOlSkool View Post
Doesn't St. Louis have varied topography? Cincinnati does as well. But I do think that as a whole most major Midwest cities are flat. Chicago, Indianapolis, and Detroit certainly are as is Cleveland but Cleveland metro has some changes in elevation. But I will say that yes most really large Midwest city centers are flat.

As far as the actual region of the Midwest though it is only the Upper Midwest that is flat but even then it is a stereotype. Because Wisconsin and Michigan are hilly in regions. The Lower Midwest has the most varied topography when you consider the Knobs which are a lower altitude extension of Appalachia and the Ozarks which themselves are the least flat area between Appalachia and the Rockies. However the parts of the Midwest that are hilly and or mountainous are usually not very populated so it leads people to believe that the Midwest is mostly flat.

However Denver is a Western city and it is flat anyway. However having a view of the Mountains is probably a good indicator you're no longer in the Midwest. That is a big difference between the Midwest and the West for the most part. In many parts of the West even if you are on a plain, you have a view of Mountains. The only parts of the Midwest where this is the case is always the very outer edges like the Plains. Even in Eastern Ohio you can't actually see the Appalachians yet.
Technically, St. Louis is at the edges of the Ozarks. The Ozarks do extend into St. Louis county but no one in Missouri considers it the Ozarks. The hilly parts of Missouri other than St. Louis are in that transition zone either fully southern in the southern quarter of the state or a mix of both Midwest and south in northern southern missouri. Most of the really flat areas of Missouri are in the Midwest, lower Midwest north of the Missouri river.
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Old 01-30-2017, 08:34 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MOforthewin View Post
Technically, St. Louis is at the edges of the Ozarks. The Ozarks do extend into St. Louis county but no one in Missouri considers it the Ozarks. The hilly parts of Missouri other than St. Louis are in that transition zone either fully southern in the southern quarter of the state or a mix of both Midwest and south in northern southern missouri. Most of the really flat areas of Missouri are in the Midwest, lower Midwest north of the Missouri river.
Ok but such is not the case in Cincinnati or most of the Lower Midwest.
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Old 01-31-2017, 04:16 AM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieOlSkool View Post
Boston and New York are somewhat flat (especially NYC). Really only Staten Island has varying topography but it definitely isn't representative of NYC as whole. Philly however is right outside the Piedmont so it makes sense that once you get out of the city center that the elevation would change drastically.

However most coastal cities being on a coastal plain will be flat. Of course the coastal plain is the exception and not the rule for the Northeast and Southeast. Much of the Northeast is either Piedmont or mountainous terrain just like the Southeast. Same goes with the West. So of course this leaves the Midwest as possibly the flattest region and honestly being that no major mountain chain runs through it, it makes sense.

So as a whole the Midwest is FLATTER for sure compared to the other regions of the country. It just isn't all a plain as people think.
The fall line runs through Philadelphia - it splits the Northwest off from the rest of the city.

But in your assessment of New York City, you're forgetting the rise in elevation once you pass the Manhattan Valley, itself a dramatic dip in elevation from about 120th to 130th streets on the West Side.

There's little change in elevation along the Hudson riverfront south of 72d Street; north of it, however, there are palisades on both banks (the one on the NJ side extends down to somewhere around 34th Street on the east bank).

And there's a pretty sharp rise from the banks of the East River in the Bronx to the main land mass of the Bronx itself.
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Old 01-31-2017, 08:07 AM
 
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Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post
The fall line runs through Philadelphia - it splits the Northwest off from the rest of the city.

But in your assessment of New York City, you're forgetting the rise in elevation once you pass the Manhattan Valley, itself a dramatic dip in elevation from about 120th to 130th streets on the West Side.

There's little change in elevation along the Hudson riverfront south of 72d Street; north of it, however, there are palisades on both banks (the one on the NJ side extends down to somewhere around 34th Street on the east bank).

And there's a pretty sharp rise from the banks of the East River in the Bronx to the main land mass of the Bronx itself.
Yeah Philly like Baltimore has a fall line run through it.

I still wouldn't classify New York as a hilly city. Boston seems more varied IMO. Heck Chicago has varying terrain on the South Side in the Irish area. Parts of it get slopes akin to the Knobby areas of the Lower Midwest and Pittsburgh. However they are extremely isolated and not even really hills but moraines.

Anyway I agree that the Midwest is the least varied in terms of topography. This is especially evident in the largest population centers but also large rural areas as well.

Now back to the point about Kansas City, I wouldn't classify it as hilly but it is in a state with large variations in topography. So as a whole Missouri doesn't have a Western terrain (steppe or mountainous). It has a very Lower Midwest characteristic topography with rolling hills and decent slopes but nothing that makes anyone want to book a ski trip to the Ozarks. They are like the Ocooch mountains except most people have at least heard of them. But you know you're in the Midwest when something that can be called a hill anywhere else passes off as a mountain over there
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Old 01-31-2017, 05:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieOlSkool View Post
Yeah Philly like Baltimore has a fall line run through it.

I still wouldn't classify New York as a hilly city. Boston seems more varied IMO. Heck Chicago has varying terrain on the South Side in the Irish area. Parts of it get slopes akin to the Knobby areas of the Lower Midwest and Pittsburgh. However they are extremely isolated and not even really hills but moraines.

Anyway I agree that the Midwest is the least varied in terms of topography. This is especially evident in the largest population centers but also large rural areas as well.

Now back to the point about Kansas City, I wouldn't classify it as hilly but it is in a state with large variations in topography. So as a whole Missouri doesn't have a Western terrain (steppe or mountainous). It has a very Lower Midwest characteristic topography with rolling hills and decent slopes but nothing that makes anyone want to book a ski trip to the Ozarks. They are like the Ocooch mountains except most people have at least heard of them. But you know you're in the Midwest when something that can be called a hill anywhere else passes off as a mountain over there
Except about half the Ozarks, on the Missouri side are southern, not lower Midwestern but culturally and foliage as well. When you get down to around Waynseville, and Lebanon the Ozarks just look more southern. Just the trees and terrain looks like something out of central and Eastern TN or GA mountains except just not quite as mountainous. Driving SW on Highway 44 you notice this around Ft. Leonard Wood and Lebanon the looks of the Ozarks and trees begin to change compared to places like Franklin County for example or Jefferson County. The Table Rock area around Branson has a totally southern look the trees and landscape not to mention the local culture.
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Old 01-31-2017, 06:47 PM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
3,658 posts, read 1,768,811 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieOlSkool View Post
Yeah Philly like Baltimore has a fall line run through it.

I still wouldn't classify New York as a hilly city. Boston seems more varied IMO. Heck Chicago has varying terrain on the South Side in the Irish area. Parts of it get slopes akin to the Knobby areas of the Lower Midwest and Pittsburgh. However they are extremely isolated and not even really hills but moraines.

Anyway I agree that the Midwest is the least varied in terms of topography. This is especially evident in the largest population centers but also large rural areas as well.

Now back to the point about Kansas City, I wouldn't classify it as hilly but it is in a state with large variations in topography. So as a whole Missouri doesn't have a Western terrain (steppe or mountainous). It has a very Lower Midwest characteristic topography with rolling hills and decent slopes but nothing that makes anyone want to book a ski trip to the Ozarks. They are like the Ocooch mountains except most people have at least heard of them. But you know you're in the Midwest when something that can be called a hill anywhere else passes off as a mountain over there
The highest point in the state of Kansas is Mount Sunflower, which is about 4000 feet above sea level.

That elevation is about the only thing Mount Sunflower has in common with an actual mountain. You don't "climb" it, you take a stroll up it.

I realize I digress a bit, but my point here was to observe that there are cities that IMO have fairly variegated terrain that you might not classify as "hilly."

If your definition of "hilly" is Pittsburgh, then none of the cities we're talking about here, not even Philadelphia, qualifies as hilly.

But there are noteworthy bluffs in Kansas City, both on the south edge of the Missouri River floodplain and the east edge of the floodplain where the Kaw (Kansas) and Missouri rivers meet. The park system George Kessler designed ran scenic drives along the sides of both bluffs, one descending from its top and the other running along its midsection; the midsection one (Cliff Drive, in North Terrace Park) survives while the descending one (Kersey Coates Drive, which ran from Lewis and Clark Point in West Terrace Park down to the West Side neighborhood) was obliterated by the west leg of the downtown freeway loop, which hugs the side of that bluff now.

And I know of hills in my hometown with gradients as steep as the one that takes Germantown Avenue from Wayne Junction into Germantown proper, though none I've seen yet as steep as the "Manayunk Wall." Low rolling hills is probably the most accurate characterization of KC's topography - but that topography does produce plenty of well-defined valleys, through which many of the city's boulevards run. I'd describe the topography of that part of New York City that borders the Hudson as opposed to Long Island Sound in similar fashion.

The only person I know of who's characterized any of the hills in Kansas City as "mountains" grew up in Detroit. 'Nuff said?
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Old 01-31-2017, 11:18 PM
 
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I didn't use to think this but since moving to the area the eastern part of the metro has this whole redneckish country vibe.
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Old 02-01-2017, 06:22 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Mathguy View Post
I didn't use to think this but since moving to the area the eastern part of the metro has this whole redneckish country vibe.
That exists literally everywhere in the country however KC metro has gotten Southern transplants historically. I feel a lot of that takes away from Western vibes considering Southerners were not a super strong influence on the West compared to people from the Northeast and Midwest.

So in a way the Southern influence to me makes it less Western. If you look at the culture of the West and the South it is very different. Even the interior Far West has less Southern culture. The conservative Southern Baptist element isn't there and politically even Western Republicans are not conservative unless they are Mormon. So the religious element factors as well as politics.
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