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Old 02-20-2013, 11:17 AM
 
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Originally Posted by BIMBAM View Post
The city needed a downtown and density or it would have sprawled out over the natural surroundings and eaten up the province's limited agricultural land, something local people weren't willing to accept. As such, they embraced density as the only solution to all of the people moving there. Regardless, they've done their best to make downtown living as livable as possible. Half of the peninsula is preserved old forest that people can go and visit, home to bald eagles and herons, and the streets are designed to terminate with view of water and mountains as much as possible, like so:

could it be the shortage of available land is due to much of it being eaten up by low-density sprawl in the surrounding greater vancouver area? which then forces ever higher high-rise development in the dense urban core as the only means of growth left available? sounds like the typical north american urban model - a dense urban core of high-rises surrounded by vast swaths of low-density sprawl. vertical sprawl surrounded by horizontal sprawl. in other words, very tall buildings surrounded by very short single-family houses with nothing in between, giving you the worst of both worlds. its a recipe for heavy car dependency and severe traffic congestion. and from a purely aesthetic point of view, upward vertical sprawl is just as much of an eyesore as the outward kind imo.



Traffic congestion in Metro Vancouver as bad as Los Angeles: report
January 8, 2013
Metro Vancouver traffic congestion 2nd worst in North America - CBC News


why do skyscraper cities always seem to lead to a great deal of low-density sprawl development in the surrounding area? I think because most people eventually get sick of the ultra high density crowded living conditions and congestion of the skyscraper city and they seek relief by moving out to the suburbs, fueling ever outward expansion of the suburbs. density is a good thing but too much density is bad. and that's the inherent problem with skyscraper cities in general, too much density.
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Old 02-20-2013, 12:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
Lol at the Blade Runner comparison. Vancouver is about as far from dystopian as you can get. It's by far the best model for a beautiful thriving urban city in North American and one of the most pleasant cities to be in you can possible go to. The people who live in Vancouver are the luckiest people in North America.
vancouver appears to have much in common with honolulu. both being modern high-rise cities surrounded by lots of great natural scenery, but also lots of sprawl. which might spoil the enjoyment of the natural scenic beauty when you have dozens of tall high-rise hotels or big high-rise apartment blocks blocking your view of it. like vancouver, honolulu also features some of the worst traffic congestion in the western hemisphere. with both cities being in the top 5 worst in NA for traffic. I think those are some of the drawbacks.
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Old 02-20-2013, 12:56 PM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
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The Vancouver traffic congestion study is misleading. It's not measuring minutes of delay, but the percentage increase in time from rush-hour to non-rush hour traffic. Non-rush hour flows relatively smoothly, so the percentage increase is larger than most but that doesn't mean it's horrible (I'd be surprised if Boston was better). New York City did well in this study, only because traffic can be horrible (or at least slow) at all hours of the day.
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Old 02-20-2013, 01:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
upward vertical sprawl is just as much of an eyesore as the outward kind imo.
No such thing - sprawl is auto-dependent low density greenfield development by definition.
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Old 02-20-2013, 02:00 PM
 
Location: Canada
4,699 posts, read 8,492,106 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
could it be the shortage of available land is due to much of it being eaten up by low-density sprawl in the surrounding greater vancouver area? which then forces ever higher high-rise development in the dense urban core as the only means of growth left available? sounds like the typical north american urban model - a dense urban core of high-rises surrounded by vast swaths of low-density sprawl. vertical sprawl surrounded by horizontal sprawl. in other words, very tall buildings surrounded by very short single-family houses with nothing in between, giving you the worst of both worlds. its a recipe for heavy car dependency and severe traffic congestion. and from a purely aesthetic point of view, upward vertical sprawl is just as much of an eyesore as the outward kind imo.



Traffic congestion in Metro Vancouver as bad as Los Angeles: report
January 8, 2013
Metro Vancouver traffic congestion 2nd worst in North America - CBC News


why do skyscraper cities always seem to lead to a great deal of low-density sprawl development in the surrounding area? I think because most people eventually get sick of the ultra high density crowded living conditions and congestion of the skyscraper city and they seek relief by moving out to the suburbs, fueling ever outward expansion of the suburbs. density is a good thing but too much density is bad. and that's the inherent problem with skyscraper cities in general, too much density.
No, it sort of went backwards from that. See, Vancouver developped first as a small autocentric city based around natural resources and the processing of natural resources. It sprawled all over the place but some major factors effected its development. First, people protested the building of highways in the city and so no highways have ever been built, which limits endless sprawl because you don't have highways to travel to the city on. Second, the agricultural land reserve was set up to preserve the region's farmland and reduce sprawl. Third, an automated rapid transit system was built out to the suburbs in place of new highways, the Skytrain system, with the last suburb on the Vancouver side of the inlet, Coquitlam, being linked up with a line under construction now. Fourth, land values in the city have skyrocketed due to a long build up in real estate prices fueled by foreign money seeking shelter, beginning with the Hong Kong cash trying to escape prior to the turnover in 1995 and continuing ever since. This made single family home ownership unaffordable for many and highrise living based around the suburban skytrain stations and in the city centre very appealing. So it's actually a sprawling Western city that stopped that form of development and converted over to a skyscraper city urban form, and which is densifying with skyscraper nodes in suburbia and low to midrise developments along its arterials, as well as adding flats to single family homes and laneway houses. It's how people meet demand and make transit oriented sprawl, I guess you could call it. The result is suburbs that are very dense.
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:17 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
No such thing - sprawl is auto-dependent low density greenfield development by definition.

not officially no. but it is a newer informal term used by some of us who are not fans of a lot of high-rise development. I call it upward sprawl. as others have used the word sprawl to describe suburban sprawl in a negative sense. though I can understand the way cities have been built out in the last 50 years, often leaves them without much choice now but to expand upward.
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Old 02-20-2013, 04:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
vancouver appears to have much in common with honolulu. both being modern high-rise cities surrounded by lots of great natural scenery, but also lots of sprawl. which might spoil the enjoyment of the natural scenic beauty when you have dozens of tall high-rise hotels or big high-rise apartment blocks blocking your view of it. like vancouver, honolulu also features some of the worst traffic congestion in the western hemisphere. with both cities being in the top 5 worst in NA for traffic. I think those are some of the drawbacks.
Based on your discussion of Vancouver, I find it difficult to believe you've set foot in it. Your characterization of it having some of the "worst traffic congestion in the western hemisphere" is simply inaccurate as anyone who has spent any amount of time in the city of Vancouver can attest to.
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Old 02-20-2013, 05:20 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
Based on your discussion of Vancouver, I find it difficult to believe you've set foot in it. Your characterization of it having some of the "worst traffic congestion in the western hemisphere" is simply inaccurate as anyone who has spent any amount of time in the city of Vancouver can attest to.
I haven't spent a lot of time there so I'm going by recent reports which refer to vancouver as one of the most traffic congested cities in North America. the cbc and vancouver sun I think are pretty credible sources. but true or not, I think it is still a fairly autocentric area. whether you can say that its one of the top 2 or 3 most congested cities in NA, alongside the likes of los angeles, may be a matter of opinion. I spent a weekend with friends hiking on trails on or near grouse mountain back in the 90s so my experience of the area is limited. we stayed in a hotel in downtown vancouver which looked to me like any other big city in north america I have ever been to, with lots of cars and lots of traffic. but again, I won't judge it from such limited experience so I'm going by what I read.

the nearby access to nature and related recreational activities seems fantastic and I did enjoy my time there so that's probably a major advantage in vancouver's favor over places like los angeles.
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Old 02-21-2013, 11:37 AM
 
Location: Thunder Bay, ON
2,610 posts, read 3,762,451 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
could it be the shortage of available land is due to much of it being eaten up by low-density sprawl in the surrounding greater vancouver area? which then forces ever higher high-rise development in the dense urban core as the only means of growth left available? sounds like the typical north american urban model - a dense urban core of high-rises surrounded by vast swaths of low-density sprawl. vertical sprawl surrounded by horizontal sprawl. in other words, very tall buildings surrounded by very short single-family houses with nothing in between, giving you the worst of both worlds. its a recipe for heavy car dependency and severe traffic congestion. and from a purely aesthetic point of view, upward vertical sprawl is just as much of an eyesore as the outward kind imo.



Traffic congestion in Metro Vancouver as bad as Los Angeles: report
January 8, 2013
Metro Vancouver traffic congestion 2nd worst in North America - CBC News


why do skyscraper cities always seem to lead to a great deal of low-density sprawl development in the surrounding area? I think because most people eventually get sick of the ultra high density crowded living conditions and congestion of the skyscraper city and they seek relief by moving out to the suburbs, fueling ever outward expansion of the suburbs. density is a good thing but too much density is bad. and that's the inherent problem with skyscraper cities in general, too much density.
I'm not sure why you keep associating congestion with sprawl... the least congested cities in North America are some of the most sprawled out like Kansas City, St. Louis, Detroit, Edmonton and Phoenix, cities with lots of highways relative to their size. It wouldn't be possible for people to live very far from work if a city was too congested, so you wouldn't really expect very sprawled cities to be too congested, although they could have long commute times. You could have dense cities with relatively little congestion if they have very good transit, but often transit (and the density it requires) just provides an alternative to traffic jams rather than getting rid of them.

Berlin which has an amazing transit system is as congested as Toronto, which is the 5th worst in North America according to TomTom. Paris also has amazing transit and would be tied for worst in North America with Los Angeles. Istanbul is far worse than LA and is extremely dense, definitely much denser than LA and about the same population.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:14 PM
 
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Originally Posted by memph View Post
I'm not sure why you keep associating congestion with sprawl... the least congested cities in North America are some of the most sprawled out like Kansas City, St. Louis, Detroit, Edmonton and Phoenix, cities with lots of highways relative to their size. It wouldn't be possible for people to live very far from work if a city was too congested, so you wouldn't really expect very sprawled cities to be too congested, although they could have long commute times. You could have dense cities with relatively little congestion if they have very good transit, but often transit (and the density it requires) just provides an alternative to traffic jams rather than getting rid of them.

Berlin which has an amazing transit system is as congested as Toronto, which is the 5th worst in North America according to TomTom. Paris also has amazing transit and would be tied for worst in North America with Los Angeles. Istanbul is far worse than LA and is extremely dense, definitely much denser than LA and about the same population.
have you ever sat in traffic in LA or San Diego? these are two of the most sprawled out areas in the world. and the traffic congestion there is beyond belief, speaking as a native of Socal which is considered by many to be the automobile-driving capital of the world.
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