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Old 01-02-2013, 02:19 PM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Perhaps the city = healthy discussion should moved to one of the many threads where that topic has been discussed already rather than dragging this thread off-topic.

Doing a search on BMI, this is the only thread with a health related title I found.

City Landscape and Public Health

I suggest looking at the posts from #201 on.

My posts on THIS thread were actually too weak - I simply did not remember the evidence.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:22 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BajanYankee View Post
There's no question that people in cities use non-auto modes more than people in suburbs.
But someone did earlier.

Quote:
But I think there's usually no appreciation for how much people in cities (even NYC) use automobiles. Outside of Manhattan, a car is a more efficient means of transportation than a train or bus (cost is a completely different story) in practically every U.S. city. Yes, it makes sense to take transit to work (which probably accounts for the overwhelming majority of transit trips), but using transit in other instances is really just making things way harder than they need to be. That's why you see so many cars parked outside of Brooklyn brownstones and DC rowhouses. They aren't there for decoration.
Yep, I realize that a car is usually more convenient excluding downtown trips. But there are plenty times when not using a car is practical and convenient. For many in places like Brooklyn, DC or Boston the extra convenience isn't worth the cost of a car, and relatively few families have 2 cars. Plenty of local trip can be done (and are, judging by the number of people on the street) by foot. The cars are often for trips done not that frequently but difficult with public transportation.

As for myself, before I owned a car, I used a bicycle for many trips (still do, but don't need to).
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:23 PM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BajanYankee View Post
There's no question that people in cities use non-auto modes more than people in suburbs. But I think there's usually no appreciation for how much people in cities (even NYC) use automobiles. Outside of Manhattan, a car is a more efficient means of transportation than a train or bus (cost is a completely different story) in practically every U.S. city. Yes, it makes sense to take transit to work (which probably accounts for the overwhelming majority of transit trips), but using transit in other instances is really just making things way harder than they need to be. That's why you see so many cars parked outside of Brooklyn brownstones and DC rowhouses. They aren't there for decoration.


Im not disputing that lots of people own cars in urban areas, and use them, but given multiple unit houses, roommates, etc, a street lined with cars in an rowhouse neighborhood is quite consistent with a signficant number of car free households, and a fortiori with car lite households (and yes, that latter is a difference from the suburbs - in Fairfax county we are accounted odd for walking home from the auto repair shop instead of using a second car)

I would point out that the latest data show 38% of households in the District of Columbia to be carfree, up from 36%.

Also its not only transit trips. Its walking trips, and to a lesser extent, biking trips.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:32 PM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BajanYankee View Post
There's no question that people in cities use non-auto modes more than people in suburbs. But I think there's usually no appreciation for how much people in cities (even NYC) use automobiles. Outside of Manhattan, a car is a more efficient means of transportation than a train or bus (cost is a completely different story) in practically every U.S. city. Yes, it makes sense to take transit to work (which probably accounts for the overwhelming majority of transit trips), but using transit in other instances is really just making things way harder than they need to be. That's why you see so many cars parked outside of Brooklyn brownstones and DC rowhouses. They aren't there for decoration.

rowhouse neighborhoods typically have easier parking. I was in South Williamsburg the other day, and we took our car - among other reasons, we were able to give my carfree sister in law a trip to Costco. but it was definitely NOT useful for quick trips around the neighborhood - it wasnt so much the walk to our parking spot (after all thats exercise) but the likelihood of circling around to find a spot afterwards. I suppose with enough money one could pay for a spot, but I'm not aware of any for pay garages in south williamsburg.

We also did NOT take our car into Manhattan (for recreation)- but again, if we had been willing to pay for parking, it might have worked.

Oh, and the day my wife took her sister in law to Costco, I visited the high line - I took transit, not only because of the pain of parking, but also because we had only ONE car in the city. To make BOTH trips at the same time by auto, would have required two autos.

Again, if you look at auto ownership in the city (or dense transit oriented suburbs) as about full autocentric lifestyle, vs car free, you miss much of the impact of density on mode share, which is driven by the declining marginal utility of additional cars beyond the household's first one.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:32 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brooklynborndad View Post
Also its not only transit trips. Its walking trips, and to a lesser extent, biking trips.
Maybe getting back to the OP... in the 1920s most trips (auto ownership in cities was a minority, though significant) were done on foot, transit or maybe bicycle. This meant either:

1) Transit had better service and connectivity than today
2) Or there were some trips that were rarely done as going from distant neighborhood A to distant neighborhood B in a city might awkward in a large city
3) People had patience for longer transit trips (for example, a friend who grew up in Brooklyn but now lives in Boston mentions locals tell him a 40 minute subway ride as long while he doesn't consider it a big deal)
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:34 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brooklynborndad View Post
rowhouse neighborhoods typically have easier parking. I was in South Williamsburg the other day, and we took our car - among other reasons, we were able to give my carfree sister in law a trip to Costco.
I thought Williamsburg is rowhouses, too, but I've mostly spent time in North/East Williamsburg (is South different?)

Driving from Williamsburg to Manhattan is a misuse of an automobile and rather senseless unless you're picking something heavy up (maybe). Driving may make sense if you're coming from some place far away without good transit or with from the suburbs with a group of people as commuter rail costs can add up for lots of people.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:36 PM
 
Location: Fort Worth, TX
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Default I think so

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
Without the really bad stuff, of course...

Say an American or European city in the early 20th century, say the early 1920s before the automobile and highway ruled.

Densities were actually generally higher. Take Manhattan, for instance, in 1900 it actually had MORE people than it does now, even with all the high-rise apartments! Goes to show you can have density without height.

There was a lot more mixed-use, of course. Shops, houses, light industry all occupying the same areas. The more noxious industry was already being 'zoned' away by this stage.

Nonetheless many cities already had a network of handsome public parks and gardens, Boston and London are good examples.

Much more day to day interaction: nowadays you'll only find this in the US in Manhattan, inner Boston, Philly, Chicago, San Francisco, but the culture has changed so interaction isn't as 'natural' as in days gone by.

I think life would be somewhat more interesting. People could still could still escape the cities to the countryside, and suburbs were envisioned as 'country estates' for the wealthy. Of course cities have evolved over time, some of the industrial cities of the 19th century like Glasgow, Manchester, Leipzig were some of the worst cities there have ever been.

The obesity rate would surely go down if most people would have to walk or bike to work and everywhere else. I THINK I would consider living in that type of era.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:37 PM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
But someone did earlier.
I know. I'm saying there's no question about it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Yep, I realize that a car is usually more convenient excluding downtown trips. But there are plenty times when not using a car is practical and convenient. For many in places like Brooklyn, DC or Boston the extra convenience isn't worth the cost of a car, and relatively few families have 2 cars. Plenty of local trip can be done (and are, judging by the number of people on the street) by foot. The cars are often for trips done not that frequently but difficult with public transportation.
Yes, plenty of local trips can be done on foot. But a lot of "local" trips are done by car. And I only raise this point because I don't find maneuvering on transit to be particularly easy in Brooklyn or DC, so I'm always a bit surprised when I get the "I ride transit everywhere in LA" response. Relying on PT exclusively in Brooklyn and DC is a major PITA, imo, so I couldn't even imagine living in other places trying to do that.

And apparently I'm not alone in this sentiment because many Brooklynites and Washingtonians own cars.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:38 PM
 
Location: The Port City is rising.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Maybe getting back to the OP... in the 1920s most trips (auto ownership in cities was a minority, though significant) were done on foot, transit or maybe bicycle. This meant either:
I want to bring up something else.

We have been speaking as if all the changes in the present era (the on topic ones) are shifts toward autocentrism.

The exception, I would argue, IS biking.

I don't know too much about actual bike usage in the 1920s. I can say that growing up in Brooklyn in the 1960s and 1970s, biking was not as big a deal as it is today. There were no bike lanes and cycle tracks - you either rode on the seperate path (like on Ocean Parkway) or in the street - where there wasnt as much in the way of education, signage, etc in support of sharing the road (the grid was still a help though).

I lived in Bolton Hill in baltimore in the 1980s. I varied between transit and walking. Looking back, I wonder why I didnt consider biking - it seems in retrospect (despite the uphill on the way home) like an obvious bike commute. But it just wasnt on the radar the same way back then as it is in 2013.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:40 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 21 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,011 posts, read 102,621,396 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brooklynborndad View Post
It was not my wish to turn this into a discussion of the impact of density on mode share or on BMI. Someone asked wish illnesses would be associated with low density living - I am merely noting that there is considerable discussion of the potential negative impact of low density living, as practiced in the USA today, on illnesses connected with a sedentary lifestyle.

When someone discussed TB, no one asked for documentation or statistical proof that high density living, as practiced in the USA today, is related to TB.

But I guess since I expect the same standards to apply to someone implying the unhealthiness of high density, as is called for for low density, I will be considered an "urbanist bully".
I did provide documentation that TB is a disease of overcrowding, as I have in the past. Some of my links are from quite recently. I did NOT say that TB is a huge problem today, either.

Your expectations have been met, sorry.
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