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Old 10-12-2011, 05:54 AM
 
2 posts, read 2,572 times
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Dear all,

I am from the Vienna University of Business and Economics and am currently doing a research on Smart City Trends. The aim if the project is to develop innovative solutions that will be able to solve some of the Mega City problems.

Would be great if you could share your opinion on air and water pollution, urban transportation inefficiency, unsafety on roads, traffic congestion, commuting, etc. Do you see any sustainable solutions for solving these and other problems?
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Old 10-12-2011, 06:43 AM
 
Location: The Triad (nc)
17,616 posts, read 23,836,334 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anastasija88 View Post
Do you see any sustainable solutions for solving these and other problems?
Have fewer people overall and ideally with an optimized demographic mix.
A similar approach (fostering efforts to have fewer people) applies to most smaller cities
and many larger towns as well.

hth
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Old 10-12-2011, 10:34 AM
 
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So...the solution to high population cities is to lower the population? What methods would you recommend to facilitate that process?
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Old 10-12-2011, 11:17 AM
 
Location: The Triad (nc)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wburg View Post
So...the solution to high population cities is to lower the population?
As requested... "the solution to air and water pollution, urban transportation inefficiency, road safety, traffic congestion, commuting, etc" is fewer people to need and create demand on those facilities and amenities and so forth. Yes.

Point being that you can't build yourself out of the problem.
Over building *is* the problem.

Quote:
What methods would you recommend to facilitate that process?
That is a different discussion.
It doesn't have to be Draconian though (as I suspect you're Q is leaning to).

What (non-draconian) approaches can YOU think of?
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Old 10-12-2011, 02:25 PM
 
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I really can't thnk of any. Although I would argue that many midwestern and Rust Belt cities have experienced dramatic population declines (Detroit has lost about 40% of its population since 1950) and they don't really appear to be flourishing. Meanwhile, a lot of western cities are growing, and while things are a bit rough these days, they are in better shape than the shrinking cities of the midwest.

And why is "over building" the problem?
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Old 10-12-2011, 03:12 PM
 
Location: The Triad (nc)
17,616 posts, read 23,836,334 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wburg View Post
Meanwhile, a lot of western cities are growing, and while things are a bit rough these days, they are in better shape than the shrinking cities of the midwest.
You say that as though this vague comparison has any bearing on anything.

Quote:
And why is "over building" the problem?
Overbuilding encourages more and more warm bodies to gravitate to that usually fixed or at least limited geographic area. People of all ages arrive and impose ever more demand on the limited resources than are available to meet this demand (in that usually fixed geographic area).

This pressure on limited resources is the #1 issue with most of the western cities and it applies to everything from potable water to roadway and transit capacity. Building more bedrooms and offices in that environment doesn't help anyone.
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Old 10-12-2011, 04:19 PM
 
7,589 posts, read 8,483,755 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrRational View Post
You say that as though this vague comparison has any bearing on anything.
It's an example of cities with a drop in population. If you claim that reducing urban populations will solve urban problems, cities with declining populations should be doing better than those that are growing. Of course, those cities lost population via decades of land use policy aimed at promoting suburban growth and allowing cities to decay, so maybe that's pushing the threshold of "draconian." Although I'd consider that less "draconian" than the more obvious ways to depopulat cities.
Quote:
Overbuilding encourages more and more warm bodies to gravitate to that usually fixed or at least limited geographic area. People of all ages arrive and impose ever more demand on the limited resources than are available to meet this demand (in that usually fixed geographic area).

This pressure on limited resources is the #1 issue with most of the western cities and it applies to everything from potable water to roadway and transit capacity. Building more bedrooms and offices in that environment doesn't help anyone.
So building ahead of demand promotes population growth?

I admit, I'm stumped to think of any non-draconian ways to reduce large city populations. Do you have any specific suggestions on how that should be accomplished?
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Old 10-12-2011, 04:47 PM
 
Location: Waterloo, ON
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Our society seems awfully wasteful to be suffering from such limited resources.
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Old 10-12-2011, 05:04 PM
 
Location: The Triad (nc)
17,616 posts, read 23,836,334 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wburg View Post
If you claim that reducing urban populations will solve urban problems, cities with declining populations should be doing better than those that are growing.
I never said any such thing.
But if I had said something so specific it would be that 500,000 people will have less demand on the infrastructure than 600,000 will; let along 950,000. That finding the "sweet spot" of an optimized demographic mix should be the goal.

As to solving "urban problems"... one can only hope but that is still far more about the productivity at the individual level than the raw number of individuals. But there are some parallels.

Quote:
Do you have any specific suggestions on how that should be accomplished?
Citing just the limited examples we've explored in this thread...
how about moving people from the over burdened west to those mid west cities with excess capacity.
That's simple enough... isn't it?

Quote:
I admit, I'm stumped to think of any non-draconian ways to reduce large city populations.
You're limiting your thinking to methods that might achieve it rapidly.

Granted we have a 40 year backlog of work to catch up with but it's still doable going forward.
The main thing is not encourage more of the same approaches of encouraging physical growth.
Of infrastructure or of population.

We can have abundance with less than is wasted and pushing scarcity.
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:33 PM
 
Location: The City
19,339 posts, read 16,659,295 times
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