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Old 03-20-2013, 10:34 PM
 
2,553 posts, read 2,005,048 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buenos View Post
Here is another link, to an image file (that was in the zip file): http://www.buenos.extra.hu/download/..._south_bay.jpg
And the calculations:
I have converted the image to black and white, then used an image analysis program to calculate the percentage of black pixels. Then calculate the area occupied by those pixels: 2.48% = 50.77 km2
If we allow 5000sqft per house including street portion for access, 2 story homes, then it is 0.00046 km2 per house.
Total number of units = 50.77 km2 / 0.00046 km2 = 109295. Take 30% off for utilities, transport, shopping and recreation: 70k homes. Build 1000/year, then it's enough for 70 years. Now they build like 50/year.
Plus you can still build apartment buildings in the city centre in the same time. You can have both, but the UGB say, no, only city centre buildings are allowed. For healthy growth, you have to increase housing supply evenly in all categories, maybe with some bias, but not with a sharp cut on one category.
Thanks for the work. I've only taken a cursory look at the image. Not all those areas are actually or practically able to be developed (eg, the marshy areas of the wastewater treatment plant), some aren't worth developing (areas next to brackish sloughs), some are on county parks, and some are being developed for other purposes (dear god, why does San Jose need a Bass Pro Shop?). I'll try to give a meaningful response as next I can.
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:44 PM
 
1,225 posts, read 1,495,177 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darkeconomist View Post
Thanks for the work. I've only taken a cursory look at the image. Not all those areas are actually or practically able to be developed (eg, the marshy areas of the wastewater treatment plant), some aren't worth developing (areas next to brackish sloughs), some are on county parks, and some are being developed for other purposes (dear god, why does San Jose need a Bass Pro Shop?). I'll try to give a meaningful response as next I can.
I have checked all those areas with Google street view. Try that. Some are on hills, but not steep hills. Remember San Francisco has tall buildings on steep hills, so it would also be easily possible. Most land can be transformed, treated and so on making suitable for housing. They can mandate very-low density housing on hills, make it look mostly green. Also San Francisco hills seen from the Alcatraz don't look bad at all, even though it has housing and streets on them. I am not advocating for building a giant parking lot covering the hills.
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Old 03-21-2013, 12:25 PM
 
2,553 posts, read 2,005,048 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buenos View Post
Plus you can still build apartment buildings in the city centre in the same time. You can have both, but the UGB say, no, only city centre buildings are allowed. For healthy growth, you have to increase housing supply evenly in all categories, maybe with some bias, but not with a sharp cut on one category.
As I said, the real problem we face is our own government and its zoning regs. Clearly, given relative low development rates despite some of the most expensive land prices in the nation, it's already hard enough to densify in San Jose. If you were to open up the UGB, the land would quickly be developed in to SFH subdivisions, and you would pull the rug from under apartment, condominium, and townhouse construction. You can't have your cake and eat it to, so to speak.

Anyway, one of the old arguments for the maintenance of the UGB is true. The Almaden and Coyote Valleys have limited access to the rest of SCC via a few throughways. Almaden has the expressway, which funnels on to 85 and 87. The Coyote Valley has 101, which splits out to 85. These are already congested routes. Adding subdivisions further south of existing developments would only worsen the problem.

Then there's the whole problem of paying for the maintenance of infrastructure. While developers are more than willing to supply the infrastructure, San Jose is hardly in a position to keep it. The city's finances are already strained (the causes are another thread entirely and would be wildly off topic).

Before doing anything else, the city has to figure itself out. Zoning has to make sense, infrastructure has to be affordable, people have to be able to get to work (by car, train, bicycle, or public or private bus). If you don't solve those, then more is just more and we eventually come back worse than square 1, with not enough land, outrageous land prices, and no land to even consider opening to development.
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Old 03-21-2013, 07:30 PM
 
1,225 posts, read 1,495,177 times
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So, what's the solution?
Is the UGB the solution for everything that matters?
The zoning: changing it should not cost money. Maybe it would it oppose someone's interest, or just no will do anything? This problem was going on for years. I think that is enough time for anyone to figure themselves out.
Actually there was action in the recent years/months in the south SF bay, but only in land preservation (at the edge of the city) and inner-city growth plans. That is the Plan Bay Area.
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Old 03-22-2013, 09:42 AM
 
Location: Just outside of Portland
4,628 posts, read 5,861,007 times
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Quote:
LOL you wish Portland had half the density and urbanity of LA, you guys are small towners to us LOL
This comment was attached to a rep I got to a post in this thread...
What the hell is that supposed to mean?

FYI, the last thing Portland "wishes" is to be like LA! LOL
Most Portlanders think LA is on a different planet, anyway.
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Old 03-22-2013, 11:39 AM
 
642 posts, read 961,295 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
The problem with Oregon's version of the UGB is it doesn't really fix the problem.

The problem of sprawl is form. Portland is building sprawl, just inside the UGB instead of outside it.

The real solution to sprawl is wholesale revision of city codes. Mandate buildings are oriented to the street and not set behind parking lots, allow for VMU, reign in the traffic engineers, tell the NIMBY's to stick it where the sun don't shine, stop requiring sufficient parking for the busiest shopping day of the year, build transit, create nodes everywhere of mixed use so people no longer need to get in a car for 99/100 trips, build more transit, etc.

It's not enough to draw a line around a city and say - in here, not there. I'm agnostic on a UGB - but it really wouldn't be necessary if codes were revised to make sprawl hard and make urbanism easy. Otherwise you are just massing sprawl. High density sprawl is just as bad as low density sprawl. You have to do more than just confine development - you have to direct it as well. Because this:



is still sprawl
I am in 100% agreement with this.

Luckily here in ABQ we have 'natural' boundaries that help curb infinite outward, low-density growth - mountains to the east, the petroglyph national monument to the west, and indian reservations to the north and south. Sure there is still a significant amount of sprawl that occurs here, but it's not nearly as bad as it would be otherwise.
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Old 03-22-2013, 12:00 PM
 
Location: Monmouth County, NJ & Staten Island, NY
407 posts, read 407,601 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
The real solution to sprawl is wholesale revision of city codes. Mandate buildings are oriented to the street and not set behind parking lots, allow for VMU, reign in the traffic engineers, tell the NIMBY's to stick it where the sun don't shine, stop requiring sufficient parking for the busiest shopping day of the year, build transit, create nodes everywhere of mixed use so people no longer need to get in a car for 99/100 trips, build more transit, etc.
Right, screw what the people want! Lets just build everything the way you want it, because it's the only way that every. single. person. wants to live, no questions asked. Let's just scrap all personal freedom while we're at it, and worship your Path of Self Righteousness because nobody in the world is truly going to be happy until we follow your model lifestyle.
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Old 03-22-2013, 03:18 PM
 
2,366 posts, read 2,128,255 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeepRightPassLeft View Post
Right, screw what the people want! Lets just build everything the way you want it, because it's the only way that every. single. person. wants to live, no questions asked. Let's just scrap all personal freedom while we're at it, and worship your Path of Self Righteousness because nobody in the world is truly going to be happy until we follow your model lifestyle.

So let's keep wasting resources?
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Old 03-22-2013, 05:00 PM
 
2,553 posts, read 2,005,048 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeepRightPassLeft View Post
Right, screw what the people want! Lets just build everything the way you want it, because it's the only way that every. single. person. wants to live, no questions asked. Let's just scrap all personal freedom while we're at it, and worship your Path of Self Righteousness because nobody in the world is truly going to be happy until we follow your model lifestyle.
In all fairness, detached SFH tracts are really common and have a variety of problems their supports have yet to address. It's not about a "model lifestyle," but about living within our means at every level and understanding that housing tracts have largely been underpriced via negative externalities.

If your argument is about choice, "sprawl" as a result of unrestrained growth doesn't provide much. Buy a detached SFH or buy a detached SFH.
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Old 03-22-2013, 06:05 PM
 
3,836 posts, read 4,715,489 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeepRightPassLeft View Post
Right, screw what the people want! Lets just build everything the way you want it, because it's the only way that every. single. person. wants to live, no questions asked. Let's just scrap all personal freedom while we're at it, and worship your Path of Self Righteousness because nobody in the world is truly going to be happy until we follow your model lifestyle.
A couple of things:

People pay a huge premium to live centrally. Even further out developments that are new urbanists command a higher price than their distantly related cousin, sprawl.

Secondly, sprawl isn't choice. Sprawl is mandated by codes. If developers had a choice they'd build urban becaus urban pays better. Everything about sprawl is by government fiat: from the setbacks to the curb sweeps to the width of the traffic lanes, to the number of parking spaces, the heights of the buildings, the impervious cover restrictions, the color and the widthe of the parking strip, the bio Swales and the berms and those silly little scrub plants that are supposed to make us feel better about hell on earth... Precisely all of it is to code.

So don't give me any crap about choice. Sprawl is by mandate.
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