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Old 07-20-2014, 05:27 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by james777 View Post
You say "Philly doesn't have much of a CBD". Philadelphia has always had one of the largest central business districts in the country, rivaling Chicago's Loop and San Francisco's downtown for second place after Midtown Manhattan..
Nope. Philly is down the list a bit behind Midtown, Midtown South and Downtown Manhattan, and then San Francisco, Boston and downtown Atlanta and just ahead of Seattle.

Center City has a lot of office space but in terms of high-rise and/or exclusive office/retail districts that only exists on Market St. in Philly between 13th and about 20th St. it spills over a little bit onto JFK and Chestnut but even there residential is mixed in quite a lot.

If took someone who had never been to Philly before and dropped them into Center City the area they would call downtown would be a small area when compared to the rest of Center City. Much of the area that is called "Center City" is, in fact, mostly residential neighborhoods that have some neighborhood type retail in them. The regional shopping is almost entirely along the spine of Market/Chestnut/Walnut.
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Old 07-21-2014, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Originally Posted by drive carephilly View Post
Nope. Philly is down the list a bit behind Midtown, Midtown South and Downtown Manhattan, and then San Francisco, Boston and downtown Atlanta and just ahead of Seattle.

Center City has a lot of office space but in terms of high-rise and/or exclusive office/retail districts that only exists on Market St. in Philly between 13th and about 20th St. it spills over a little bit onto JFK and Chestnut but even there residential is mixed in quite a lot.

If took someone who had never been to Philly before and dropped them into Center City the area they would call downtown would be a small area when compared to the rest of Center City. Much of the area that is called "Center City" is, in fact, mostly residential neighborhoods that have some neighborhood type retail in them. The regional shopping is almost entirely along the spine of Market/Chestnut/Walnut.
Not sure I agree with this, I have been to Philly a couple times, not knowing much about the city and it felt like downtown was a good size downtown.
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Old 07-21-2014, 03:32 PM
 
Location: Vineland, NJ
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Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
Not sure I agree with this, I have been to Philly a couple times, not knowing much about the city and it felt like downtown was a good size downtown.
In Philly, Center City=Downtown. Everything inside of it is considered the downtown area of Philly.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Ce...36e1d13cf7c05b
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Old 07-21-2014, 06:04 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Originally Posted by gwillyfromphilly View Post
In Philly, Center City=Downtown. Everything inside of it is considered the downtown area of Philly.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Ce...36e1d13cf7c05b
I know, I was just basing it on how I felt as an outsider rather than a local and the local definition of downtown.
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Old 07-22-2014, 03:47 AM
 
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Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
Not sure I agree with this, I have been to Philly a couple times, not knowing much about the city and it felt like downtown was a good size downtown.
I'm speaking from the experience of having lived in Center City and South Philly for ~14 years and having hundreds of casual conversations where this sort of thing comes up.

I've brought a lot of people to Philly for the first time from other parts of the US and from other countries. I'm not trying to say that Philly is small. I know it isn't.

I'm saying that Philly doesn't have the same sort of stereotypical, north american (or australian or south african for that matter) downtown that's a bunch of high rise office buildings where not a lot of people live. Or a downtown like LA or NYC where people have only started to move in recently.

Sure, Philly has a cluster of big office buildings but that's a relatively recent development. Office space has always been spread out along the Market/Chestnut/Walnut corridor between Old City and Rittenhouse and the rest of the area known as Center City has been primarily residential (with the exception of Old City until relatively recently). If you were a visitor and I took you for walk around South St criss-crossing from Society Hill (in Center City) to Queen Village (not in CC) there's no way you would be able to tell which one was and which one wasn't unless someone told you.

In that regard Philly has a lot more in common with Dublin or London than with Chicago or Boston or Baltimore.

Like I said, I lived in Philly for a while and the use of Center City was always contextual. The further away you are from it the larger and more vague it gets. Similarly, if I was in Manayunk or South Philly and someone said, "I'm going downtown" they almost always meant Market/Chestnut west of City Hall. No one would ever say, "i'm going downtown" if they were going to South St. If they were going to Old City they would simply say "I'm going to Old City" even though it's in Center City.
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Old 07-22-2014, 06:37 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drive carephilly View Post
I'm speaking from the experience of having lived in Center City and South Philly for ~14 years and having hundreds of casual conversations where this sort of thing comes up.

I've brought a lot of people to Philly for the first time from other parts of the US and from other countries. I'm not trying to say that Philly is small. I know it isn't.

I'm saying that Philly doesn't have the same sort of stereotypical, north american (or australian or south african for that matter) downtown that's a bunch of high rise office buildings where not a lot of people live. Or a downtown like LA or NYC where people have only started to move in recently.

Sure, Philly has a cluster of big office buildings but that's a relatively recent development. Office space has always been spread out along the Market/Chestnut/Walnut corridor between Old City and Rittenhouse and the rest of the area known as Center City has been primarily residential (with the exception of Old City until relatively recently). If you were a visitor and I took you for walk around South St criss-crossing from Society Hill (in Center City) to Queen Village (not in CC) there's no way you would be able to tell which one was and which one wasn't unless someone told you.

In that regard Philly has a lot more in common with Dublin or London than with Chicago or Boston or Baltimore.

Like I said, I lived in Philly for a while and the use of Center City was always contextual. The further away you are from it the larger and more vague it gets. Similarly, if I was in Manayunk or South Philly and someone said, "I'm going downtown" they almost always meant Market/Chestnut west of City Hall. No one would ever say, "i'm going downtown" if they were going to South St. If they were going to Old City they would simply say "I'm going to Old City" even though it's in Center City.
I am just saying this outsider felt like the downtown was actually very large in Philly. You being from Philly are using the neighborhood names of places that would be considered downtown because you are familiar with those name and neighborhoods.
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Old 07-22-2014, 07:38 AM
 
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Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
I am just saying this outsider felt like the downtown was actually very large in Philly. You being from Philly are using the neighborhood names of places that would be considered downtown because you are familiar with those name and neighborhoods.
I'm not trying to argue about what your perception was (because that would be silly) . . . and again, I'm not saying that Philadelphia is small. I've been around. I know it's a big city.

So let me put it another way. People in Philly don't say "downtown" that often but if/when they do they're referring to a specific area within Center City not the entirety of Center City.

Center City is a collection of neighborhoods in the way that South or West Philly are. Downtown, to the extent that it exists, is but a small section of Center City.
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Old 07-22-2014, 07:47 AM
 
Location: The City
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drive carephilly View Post
I'm not trying to argue about what your perception was (because that would be silly) . . . and again, I'm not saying that Philadelphia is small. I've been around. I know it's a big city.

So let me put it another way. People in Philly don't say "downtown" that often but if/when they do they're referring to a specific area within Center City not the entirety of Center City.

Center City is a collection of neighborhoods in the way that South or West Philly are. Downtown, to the extent that it exists, is but a small section of Center City.
Philly doesn't really have a midtown or uptown. Center City is the local name for the DT - which by feel is pretty large compared to most US cities.

I think in many ways and while I understand your points it is more a local perception whereas to the outsider the nuances are not as well understood (similar to many places really)
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Old 07-22-2014, 12:02 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drive carephilly View Post
I'm not trying to argue about what your perception was (because that would be silly) . . . and again, I'm not saying that Philadelphia is small. I've been around. I know it's a big city.

So let me put it another way. People in Philly don't say "downtown" that often but if/when they do they're referring to a specific area within Center City not the entirety of Center City.

Center City is a collection of neighborhoods in the way that South or West Philly are. Downtown, to the extent that it exists, is but a small section of Center City.
In the traditional sense of the word, Philly doesn't have a downtown because its commercial urban district isn't down town. It was designed to be at the center of the city.

Manhattan is a great example of downtown, midtown, and uptown by the traditional sense of the words. One is at the bottom of the island, one is at the middle, and one is at the top.
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Old 07-22-2014, 01:58 PM
 
Location: Vineland, NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kidphilly View Post
Philly doesn't really have a midtown or uptown. Center City is the local name for the DT - which by feel is pretty large compared to most US cities.
I could be wrong but doesn't Charlotte refer to their downtown area as Center City as well?
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