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Old 12-28-2013, 11:16 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,681,041 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
sounds like "obey ped signals at all times" is more of a SoCal norm than a California-wide norm? From what I noticed, pedestrians followed the signals more in San Francisco than in cities back home, say Boston and obviously NYC. But not everyone waited and it seemed like the norm was to cross as soon as the other road turned yellow. Nowhere as extreme as Seattle.
I think so. I haven't heard of any jay walking tickets here in the Bay Area. I regularly hop in the crosswalk when it is flashing if there is sufficient time.

A light near my home appears to be broken, so I have been crossing with the green light after waiting 3 cycles with no man last week.
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Old 01-01-2014, 09:12 AM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,220 posts, read 67,358,468 times
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As has already been stated I don't necessarily think this trend is geared merely towards "urban" environments but can also be seen in small towns and more well-established "streetcar" suburbs as well.

Suburban sprawl was great initially.

"Wow. I can have my OWN half-acre of land, my own driveway, my own two-car garage, my own 2,500-square foot house, all located on a quiet cul-de-sac? All for a slight cost savings that what I'd pay for in the city? Sign me up! Manifest destiny, baby!"

Then the Jones's who used to live next-door to you back in the city built a home next to you on your cul-de-sac. A man from your old church in the city sold the land behind your home for another housing development. Your child's dentist in the city tore down that cute little old farmhouse on the corner entryway into your subdivision for a new ostentatious McMansion. Walmart is building a new "power center" across the two-lane street that your subdivision feeds into, which they are partially paying to help expand to four lanes to accommodate an increase in traffic. Soon more people are attracted, and before you know it your own picturesque little piece of exurban tranquility is now overpopulated. You moved to this community for lower taxes. Guess what? So did everyone else around you, which means taxes are now being raised considerably to pay for new schools, new police officers, a paid fire/EMS staff vs. an all-volunteer squad, new sewer systems to replace the private septic systems, new water mains to replace the private wells, new streetlights to enhance safety for motorists, etc. Soon you realize your tax bill is almost as high as it was back in the city, only now instead of your 10-minute bus ride to work from your city neighborhood to Downtown (or your 20-minute drive to work when you first moved to this new personal oasis) you are now battling crowded roads just to get to another increasingly-crowded Interstate, making your commute now 45 minutes each way.

You start to think to yourself...

"If I'm not saving much money on taxes, if I'm sacrificing much more time away from my family to be in my vehicle in traffic, and if our increasingly-overcrowded schools are starting to slip in academic quality, then is the $50,000 I saved on buying this house for the extra 1/4-acre of land and 1,000 square feet of living space really worth it?!"

For some? Yes. For an increasing number? No, hence the gradual return of people from the outer suburbs and exurbs closer to the city.

Granted this particular scenario presumes the employer is located in the city proper and not in an exurban business park closer to this individual's residence. With that being said I think corporations are going to learn in the next 10-20 years that they'll have a more difficult time enticing bright young talent to work for them when that bright young talent would have to grudgingly reverse-commute from their Downtown lofts to that "McSterile" corporate campus 25 miles outside the city on congested roads. I'm one of those "bright young minds". Guess what? I live in the heart of the city. I've turned down exurban/suburban job offers and will continue to do so. So have my friends, and so have many other younger people. Why? We're committed to revitalizing our nation's cities---the ones our great-grandparents helped to forge and the ones that were neglected when our grandparents and parents decided to abandon them.

People are realizing that road rage, hemorrhoids, an expanding waistline, the opportunity cost of time spent commuting vs. time spent with loved ones, etc. are increasingly NOT worth it to save a few bucks by moving to the exurbs to (temporarily) get a bit more breathing room and square footage before everyone else tries to follow suit in a few years. People would rather live in an older established community so they can have a shorter commute home and then walk their kids down the sidewalk while they ride their bikes so you can all get ice cream at the Dairy Queen on Market Street vs. being too overtaxed and stressed from a hellish commute home to want to spend any quality time with them, instead buying them Chick-Fil-A from the drive-thru on the way home to help assuage your guilty conscience.

Post-WWII suburbia has very little, if any benefits to society. I should know. I grew up in this environment and was always "itching" to escape. Now I'm in the city, where I can walk to nearly everything and anything---farmers' markets, coffeeshops, diners, grocers, the subway, bus stops, sporting events, concerts, off-Broadway performances, etc. in the same amount of time it would take someone from one of these post-WWII hellholes to drive into the city and find (expensive) parking.
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Old 01-01-2014, 11:59 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 22 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,014 posts, read 102,621,396 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A2DAC1985 View Post
2. How so? How does "living among many other people = not social"? And how does "living among fewer people = social"? Am I getting it right? If not, correct me.

So, could you explain again #2?
It's the quality of the relationships, not the quantity. You can go into a coffee shop in the city and *** it up with half a dozen people, but you might not even know their names. Of course, you can do that in a small town too, a la "The Sidetrack Tap" in Lakewobegon, MN. But generally, in a smaller community (and many suburbs function as small towns) you know the people's names, their spouses' names, where they work, the number and ages of their kids, etc. You probably go to church with some of them, or otherwise have business with them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oakparkdude View Post
And many empty nesters will agree with you. But quite a few empty nesters do find urban living desirable, so much so that in my metro (Chicago), there's a whole segment of the real estate industry catering to this demographic. I'm not sure that was the case 30 years ago.
From everything I've read, most Boomers are "retiring in place", regardless of the fluff stories one can read on the Huffpo, Atlantic Cities, etc. Read the AARP mag instead.

Quote:
Originally Posted by drive carephilly View Post
Your anecdotes, as contrarian as they always seem to be, are indicative of a broader reality hardly ever.

The great depression destroyed food prices (and was a long, deflationary period in general) and tens of thousands of farm families either sold out while they could still recoup pennies on the dollar or they went bankrupt and lost their farms as a result. That's to say nothing of what the droughts and dust bowl of the mid-1930s did.

The 1930s was an awful time to be a farmer.
You have a problem with the TOS?

I was not talking about the ag industry. I was talking about family farming, AKA subsistence farming. An anecdote about the 1940s in Europe is not the equivalent to an anecdote about the 1930s in Wisconsin, where my mom grew up, or Nebraska, where my MIL grew up. Such farmers usually kept cattle, chickens and the like which they could eat. Many farmers, like my grandfather, also knew how to hunt and fish to feed their families. Not every section of the country was affected by the dust bowl. In Indiana, at the height of the drought of the 1930s, the state got 25 inches of rain. That is more than we get in Colorado in a normal year!

Midwestern Farmers during the Depression « Midwestern Literature
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Old 01-01-2014, 12:34 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,681,041 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
It's the quality of the relationships, not the quantity. You can go into a coffee shop in the city and *** it up with half a dozen people, but you might not even know their names. Of course, you can do that in a small town too, a la "The Sidetrack Tap" in Lakewobegon, MN. But generally, in a smaller community (and many suburbs function as small towns) you know the people's names, their spouses' names, where they work, the number and ages of their kids, etc. You probably go to church with some of them, or otherwise have business with them.



From everything I've read, most Boomers are "retiring in place", regardless of the fluff stories one can read on the Huffpo, Atlantic Cities, etc. Read the AARP mag instead.



You have a problem with the TOS?

I was not talking about the ag industry. I was talking about family farming, AKA subsistence farming. An anecdote about the 1940s in Europe is not the equivalent to an anecdote about the 1930s in Wisconsin, where my mom grew up, or Nebraska, where my MIL grew up. Such farmers usually kept cattle, chickens and the like which they could eat. Many farmers, like my grandfather, also knew how to hunt and fish to feed their families. Not every section of the country was affected by the dust bowl. In Indiana, at the height of the drought of the 1930s, the state got 25 inches of rain. That is more than we get in Colorado in a normal year!

Midwestern Farmers during the Depression « Midwestern Literature
When I lived in more suburban parts I knew none of my neighbors. I didn't ever see most of them, I guess we had opposite schedules. Now in a more urban area I know many more of my neighbors. I see the. On Main Street at the coffee shop etc. I live near an independent grocery that offers pensions and good pay. I have seen the same workers for my past 8 years in the neighborhood and some are hitting 20+ years working at the store.

There is no discerning patten of community engagement,some suburbs are set up to make it exceedingly difficult.

As for coffee shop culture? My fave baristas make the rounds at cafés all over town. Usually a friend,y face, even at the ones that just opened
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Old 01-01-2014, 12:53 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 22 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,014 posts, read 102,621,396 times
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^^When I lived in the city (Pittsburgh and Denver) I knew none of my neighbors. I've lived in several burbs where I've known a few to many neighbors. In my present situation, where I have lived for 24 years, I know a lot of neighbors. Just this morning, I went for a power walk with one neighbor who I've been walking with for at least the past 15 years. Then she invited me to her house to hot-tub. That NEVER happened in the city.

Some cities are also set up to make community engagement difficult. Denver, with 600,000+ people has a city council of 13. Louisville, where I live, has a population just under 20,000 and a city council of 6. Many times, my council person is a near neighbor. Sometimes, I've known these people (2 from each of 3 wards) personally as well. None of that happened in Denver. Pittsburgh has a corrupt government.
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Old 01-01-2014, 01:02 PM
 
Location: East of the Sun, West of the Moon
15,523 posts, read 17,745,743 times
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New urban trend? Well it all started about 10,000 years ago with agriculture...

Çatalhöyük

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C3%87atalh%C3%BCy%C3%BCk
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Old 01-01-2014, 01:50 PM
 
4,069 posts, read 3,099,766 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
When I lived in more suburban parts I knew none of my neighbors. I didn't ever see most of them, I guess we had opposite schedules. Now in a more urban area I know many more of my neighbors. I see the. On Main Street at the coffee shop etc. I live near an independent grocery that offers pensions and good pay. I have seen the same workers for my past 8 years in the neighborhood and some are hitting 20+ years working at the store.

There is no discerning patten of community engagement,some suburbs are set up to make it exceedingly difficult.

As for coffee shop culture? My fave baristas make the rounds at cafés all over town. Usually a friend,y face, even at the ones that just opened
I wonder if some of these different experiences can be attributed to regional differences? I live in a community that is exurban sprawl by C-D definitions but in reality it is a farming community dating back to the 1700s. While the farming aspect has declined from what it once was and some land has been turned into subdivisions we still have enough active farming that people will be guaranteed to encounter it whenever passing through town.

I do acknowledge that the tract housing common to the newer communities out west sounds very boring and unpleasant to live in. However I have never seen that type of development in the northeast. My area tends to develop under the pattern of large custom homes on 2 to 3 acre lots and trust me the market for these homes remains robust despite these urban trends.
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Old 01-01-2014, 01:58 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
45,990 posts, read 41,989,613 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelCityRising View Post

Then the Jones's who used to live next-door to you back in the city built a home next to you on your cul-de-sac. A man from your old church in the city sold the land behind your home for another housing development. Your child's dentist in the city tore down that cute little old farmhouse on the corner entryway into your subdivision for a new ostentatious McMansion. Walmart is building a new "power center" across the two-lane street that your subdivision feeds into, which they are partially paying to help expand to four lanes to accommodate an increase in traffic. Soon more people are attracted, and before you know it your own picturesque little piece of exurban tranquility is now overpopulated. You moved to this community for lower taxes. Guess what? So did everyone else around you, which means taxes are now being raised considerably to pay for new schools, new police officers, a paid fire/EMS staff vs. an all-volunteer squad, new sewer systems to replace the private septic systems, new water mains to replace the private wells, new streetlights to enhance safety for motorists, etc. Soon you realize your tax bill is almost as high as it was back in the city, only now instead of your 10-minute bus ride to work from your city neighborhood to Downtown (or your 20-minute drive to work when you first moved to this new personal oasis) you are now battling crowded roads just to get to another increasingly-crowded Interstate, making your commute now 45 minutes each way.
The solution some Northeastern suburbs do to the tranquility "being ruined by development" issue is large lot minimum zoning, to prevent the town from getting too built up. Keep big stores only in specific areas. Large scale land preservation also works. Of course, this leads to expensive housing and makes commutes no better or worse.

Quote:
People are realizing that road rage, hemorrhoids, an expanding waistline, the opportunity cost of time spent commuting vs. time spent with loved ones, etc. are increasingly NOT worth it to save a few bucks by moving to the exurbs to (temporarily) get a bit more breathing room and square footage before everyone else tries to follow suit in a few years. People would rather live in an older established community so they can have a shorter commute home and then walk their kids down the sidewalk while they ride their bikes so you can all get ice cream at the Dairy Queen on Market Street vs. being too overtaxed and stressed from a hellish commute home to want to spend any quality time with them, instead buying them Chick-Fil-A from the drive-thru on the way home to help assuage your guilty conscience.
Most suburbs have been around decades, here many for half century. The residents aren't temporary residents, in the suburb I grew up in, many had parents who grew up in the same town. True, there are new outer suburbs that people move to for a bigger lot and house at a lower price at the expense of a long commute, but plenty suburbs aren't those.

Quote:
Post-WWII suburbia has very little, if any benefits to society. I should know. I grew up in this environment and was always "itching" to escape. Now I'm in the city, where I can walk to nearly everything and anything---farmers' markets, coffeeshops, diners, grocers, the subway, bus stops, sporting events, concerts, off-Broadway performances, etc. in the same amount of time it would take someone from one of these post-WWII hellholes to drive into the city and find (expensive) parking.
The bolded would only be walking distance in downtown, or neighborhoods adjacent to downtown. The rest of the city still has to travel to the events by transit or car, though less than most suburbanites. Maybe not in Pittsburgh, but in other cities suburbanites often take transit to downtown, partly to avoid parking issues.
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Old 01-01-2014, 01:59 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
^^When I lived in the city (Pittsburgh and Denver) I knew none of my neighbors. I've lived in several burbs where I've known a few to many neighbors. In my present situation, where I have lived for 24 years, I know a lot of neighbors. Just this morning, I went for a power walk with one neighbor who I've been walking with for at least the past 15 years. Then she invited me to her house to hot-tub. That NEVER happened in the city.

Some cities are also set up to make community engagement difficult. Denver, with 600,000+ people has a city council of 13. Louisville, where I live, has a population just under 20,000 and a city council of 6. Many times, my council person is a near neighbor. Sometimes, I've known these people (2 from each of 3 wards) personally as well. None of that happened in Denver. Pittsburgh has a corrupt government.
That isn't an urban v suburban thing. I lived on the edge of downtown Portland and knew a number of neighbors on my street as well as everyone that lived in my little building. My sister-in-law lives in North Portland which is that area between suburban and urban and they know most of the people that live on their streets. My parents live on a cul-de-sac suburban development and they know most of the people living on their street and surrounding streets.

Heck, here in Brooklyn, I see people who interact with their neighbors all the time, it is called being social...I can't comment on your time in Pittsburgh or Denver, but maybe you had a different experience than other people did.
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Old 01-01-2014, 02:04 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdAilment View Post
Perhaps it is mainly C-D users, or perhaps it is a real new wave and movement; honestly I'm inclined to believe it is a bit of both, this comes from the mindset of most posters here and the population trends in cities. Anyway, what is the driving force behind this urban trend that is sweeping the nation? People clamor for and love density, areas teeming with people, living units stacked on top of each other, etc.

I'm a millennial, and maybe I am old fashioned or of a different upbringing, but I like my space. I think suburbs, neighborhoods with spaced out houses, or homes on the countryside are the better places to raise a family and are overall less stressful and more easy going, albeit probably more expensive.

What is it with hipsters and these new trendy yuppies who are all about living in the heart of the city?

I am in no way shape or form against this! Also, I am glad that some people are moving back to the cities, this is resurrecting countless downtowns across the nation, which is a good thing! However, downtown and urban life is not something everyone wants, but what is driving this new trend?
Without going through the pages, which I am a bit late to this conversation, I wanted to comment on your post. It says you live in the Deep South, which might have something to do with you love for the suburbs...it is very suburban in the Deep South and I know people who are born and raised in the south and prefer the suburbs over cities, which works for them.

But then there are people like me (though I would be a GenX guy and not a millennial) and I grew up in the south eastern suburbs and couldn't wait to move to a city when I grew up, I always longed for the urban lifestyle, but now that I am older, married, and thinking about a family, I have realized that this desire for bigger and more urban has faded as I have realized the urban lifestyle of Portland, Or is actually the perfect amount of urban for me to live in where I could possibly own a home with a little yard, but still enjoy the urban qualities of a walkable neighborhood with things close by, as well as an easily bikeable community.

We each have different tastes and even though you are a millennial doesn't mean you need to like the same things as everyone else.
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