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Old 06-21-2011, 05:50 AM
 
Location: City of McKeesport
3,884 posts, read 3,546,591 times
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YouTube - ‪James Howard Kunstler: The tragedy of suburbia‬‏
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Old 06-21-2011, 06:24 AM
 
Location: ɥbɹnqsʇʇıd
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"Little known fact, JFK was actually shot in Cranberry Township. It was a cover up all along!"

- Grand Buffet

Last edited by Aqua Teen Carl; 06-21-2011 at 07:09 AM..
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Old 06-21-2011, 06:36 AM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
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The way I see it is if the metro area as an entire entity is growing extremely slowly, if at all, then the continued rapid growth of places like Cranberry Township only serves to detrimentally impact the core communities of the metro area by absorbing growth that otherwise would have benefitted pre-existing communities in need of fresh blood. I suppose I just don't see how the city's population barely treading above 300,000 when it once had nearly 700,000 while its outer-tier suburbs are exploding in growth is healthy. To me it seems like the metro area is becoming a donut---the interior is hemorraghing population while the outer ring suburbs are growing quickly. When I see Cranberry Township's population is about to eclipse 30,000 I wonder how much more vibrant the city proper would be if even a fraction of those upper-middle-class tax-paying families were living here instead.

Pardon me for being defensive of a city I love. Pittsburgh can't thrive if people don't find it attractive as a place to live (and judging by the continued population freefall they don't). It irks me when I go to a place like Cranberry Township (or, to be fair, Robinson Township, Murrysville, Moon Township, Kennedy Township, and other outer-tier suburbs) and see trees being felled left and right for new tract housing while abandoned historic rowhomes in my own neighborhood are collapsing and will eventually be replaced by urban prairie. Once these historic treasures are gone they can't be replaced---as a prime example Polish Hill experimented with "new construction" via a few homes on Herron Avenue, and they look hideous and terribly out-of-place.

I don't mind crazy sprawl in a place like Atlanta, for example, where so many people are moving into the metro area as a whole that the city and suburbs can BOTH successfully grow astronomically. That's the same with Washington, DC, too, which is now home to over 600,000 souls and growing daily while there is still crazy sprawl in Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, and Southern PA. This is a different area, though. With very few new residents trickling in the city is in direct competition with its own outer suburbs for any hope of reinforcing its residential tax base, and I really don't see that as being healthy. Cranberry Township is even in a different county, which means the residents moving there in droves, dining there, working there, doing their shopping there, etc. aren't even paying the 1% sales tax to Allegheny County.

The day that Pittsburgh's population officially drops below 300,000 is the day I become much less enthusiastic about it ever returning to its heyday peak. Urban prairie isn't pretty, folks. If you don't believe me then explore East St. Louis, Illinois, sometime. Is that what we really want for Pittsburgh's future by advocating the continued success and growth of the exurbs at Pittsburgh's expense? I would love to see Cranberry Township (and related exurbs) thrive but NOT by competing with Pittsburgh city proper for what little new growth---residential and otherwise---this metro area seems to receive. The continued decentralization of employment, shopping, and residential bases in the metro area will also lead to worsening traffic congestion in the long-term. This can already be seen here. The Parkways are always terribly congested at rush-hour while city surface streets typically are much more manageable. I can commute from my home to my workplace, also in the city proper, in minutes.

P.S. Love2Golf09, you can cut the nasty attitude you've displayed towards me in every thread before I, too, take the gloves off.
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Old 06-21-2011, 06:45 AM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 13,791,193 times
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The problem with people like Kuntsler is he thinks he speaks on behalf of all people. If you want to stop and consider facts, the fact is, he does not. I took the following from his video; sounds dramatic at first but if you stop to analyze it, it's BS.

"Nobody is having a better day because of that" (said while a slide of a suburban street is shown).

Catchy, but inaccurate. Here's the fact: A large number of people who live in suburbs do have better days and credit their happiness to the fact that they enjoy living in a suburb. Whether Kunstler wants to believe it or not, it's true. Many people feel this way.

"These are places that are not worth caring about" (a phrase emphasized and repeated throughout the video)

Nice dramatic statement, but just because you say something over and over doesn't make it true. First point of illogic: Obviously, thousands of people do think these towns are worth caring about. That's why they choose to buy homes there and start businesses there. If those towns weren't worth caring about they wouldn't exist, grow or succeed. And, the fact that suburb bashes feel compelled to bash these little towns only proves that they are worth caring about. Obviously, the suburb bashers care a great deal.

"If there is one great catastrophe about these places, it is that they have deprived us of the ability to live in a hopeful present"

Nice doomsday scenario, but stilll nothing more than BS. Whether he wishes to admit it or not, a huge percentage of people who live in suburbs are hopeful, optimistic, and enjoy living in the present. In fact, it's my opinion that what are often caled "happy shiny people" are one of the most notable characteristics of suburbanites, the one that especially drives a lot of anti-suburbanites up the wall.

"When we have enough of them we have a nation that is not worth defending. I want you to think about the young men and women in Iraq spilling their blood in the sand and ask yourself what is their last thought of home? I hope it is not of the curb cut at Chucky Cheese! (Suburbs) are not good enough for Americans to be spilling their blood for."

Really???? There are no troops at all in Iraq who have fond thoughts of home if they're from a suburb? Somehow I doubt that. Does he have stats to back this up?

Using Kunstler's logic, if a suburban soldier's dying thought is of a curb cut, I guess that means that a city soldier's last thought is of graffiti or a piece of trash in the street.

Last edited by Caladium; 06-21-2011 at 07:21 AM..
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:10 AM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
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More Americans now live in the suburbs than anywhere else, which is of definite concern to me. I don't hate "suburbs" in general, though. A city's estalbished inner "streetcar" (or similarly-oriented) suburbs often have a lot of charm to them, a lot of potential for reinvestment, and are often much more well-connected to the city proper. Some local examples would be Wilkinsburg, Swissvale, Edgewood, McKees Rocks, Millvale, Etna, Sharpsburg, Aspinwall, Bellevue, and Avalon, to name just a few. What I don't see the value in are these "willy-nilly" newer outer suburbs with their haphazard cul-de-sacs, wide main arterials that are often congested, seas of asphalt, and pretty much doing everything in their power to cater to the automobile first and pedestrians and cyclists as afterthoughts.
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:13 AM
 
9,856 posts, read 7,047,285 times
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I hate cranberry, but then again, I hate suburbs in general. It isn't anything specific about cranberry.

I simply have a hard time thinking of something worse than having to live in the suburbs. Bland homes, cul-de-sacs and strip malls are no way to live a life. Not that everyone should feel that way - it is just me.
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:15 AM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 13,791,193 times
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Cranberry actually brings corporations from other cities to the area, to the benefit of the entire region.

I think this post from another thread explained it perfectly (especially the part I put in bold).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ferrarisnowday View Post
In some cases, like Westinghouse, Cranberry probably is competing with the city. However other times Cranberry is competing with other Cranberry equivalents around the country. Take McKesson for example, that is a company headquartered in San Francisco; if places like Cranberry didn't exist in the Pittsburgh metro, they very well might have chosen a different metro entirely. It's better for Pittsburgh, both the city proper and the region, to have companies located in Cranberry than in the suburban office parks of other metros.

It's also important to remember that the choice for a startup isn't always Downtown vs. a suburban office park. There are other city neighborhoods like the Southside and East Liberty that are suited to startups, as well as the inner suburbs.
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:18 AM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
25,848 posts, read 44,078,454 times
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I'm sorry I offend so many people. You must realize, though, that I'd do nothing but encourage Cranberry Township's success and general well-being IF the entire metro area was growing proportionately. If people were moving into Pittsburgh's city proper (which as we saw reflected in the 2010 Census they are NOT) and if people were also moving into the inner-ring suburbs requiring TLC (which we also saw is NOT happening), then I'd roll out the red carpet for places like Cranberry Township to continue blossoming. It just seems like what little growth our metro area gets, though, is very lopsided and concentrated nearly exclusively in the outer-tier suburbs like Cranberry.

I know BrianTH has tried to explain to me before how Cranberry's continued growth will benefit the city proper and its inner-ring suburbs, but I suppose I'm just too stubborn to ever foresee how the continued decentralization of employment options and residences within our metro area will do anything but lead to greater levels of traffic congestion getting into or out of the city, make it more difficult to effectively plan a mass transit system that actually works, increase the percentage of all of our tax revenues that will have to subsidize new utility lines, streets, and other infrastructural amenities in these newer areas, and lead to continued decay and neglect of areas that need reinvestment the most.
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:21 AM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
25,848 posts, read 44,078,454 times
Reputation: 10697
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caladium View Post
Cranberry actually brings corporations from other cities to the area, to the benefit of the entire region.

I think this post from another thread explained it perfectly (especially the part I put in bold).
I suppose from the standpoint of that bolded statement I don't see how it's better for Pittsburgh city proper to have more employment options miles away in an exurb in another county because all that will do then is encourage more city residents to apply for jobs there and then move their families outside the city limits and closer to those workplaces. I can personally tell you that if I do have to settle for a position in Cranberry I'll have to grudgingly move to the North Hills suburbs, as I dread a long commute from the East End up to Cranberry. How will my partner and I moving OUT of the city to work at an exurban employer benefit the city's tax base?
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:28 AM
 
Location: ɥbɹnqsʇʇıd
4,161 posts, read 2,690,047 times
Reputation: 2871
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelCityRising View Post
I can personally tell you that if I do have to settle for a position in Cranberry I'll have to grudgingly move to the North Hills suburbs, as I dread a long commute from the East End up to Cranberry.
It's not as bad as you think. Tons of people that live in the city commute to Cranberry every day. The key is having your employer let you work an early shift so you can beat both the morning commute and the afternoon commute. Besides, didn't you move to Pittsburgh to escape the strip mall horse sh*t all over the rest of the country?
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