U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Urban Planning
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 02-13-2014, 01:50 PM
 
3,836 posts, read 4,716,650 times
Reputation: 2538

Advertisements

Best - Vancouver
Worst - Houston, Phoenix, Atlanta, Detroit (take your pick)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-13-2014, 10:24 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,171 posts, read 29,681,041 times
Reputation: 26671
Quote:
Originally Posted by demonta4 View Post
Wonder how much money insurance companies gain from this.
Good question. But as a result, I exit the freeway super slowly in oakland. You go from freeway to residential in 30 seconds.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-14-2014, 02:03 AM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,697 posts, read 23,672,920 times
Reputation: 35449
Portland OR. Large expensive apartment buildings being built replacing perfectly good single dwelling houses which are being torn down to make way for them. These new buildings are geared towards singles or couples without children. The city is becoming more and more less family friendly as the remaining available houses become more and more scarce and expensive as a result.

No one objects to the buildings going up on abandoned vacant lots that were eyesores. That's an improvement. Those are good changes. But tearing down old craftsman homes in good condition to build a large apartment building that crowds an old neighborhood is just a not good example of neighborhood planning. As someone on the Portland forum recently pointed out, this also changes the entire face of a neighborhood. You lose the ability of what makes the neighborhood that used to be typical of Portland where neighbor knew neighbor either from the small apartment buildings or nearby houses to just a lot of people walking around with their heads down. In other words, like any other impersonal city neighborhood.

Also, the large apartment buildings in old neighborhoods do not have parking which leave very the narrow streets with little parking room and not enough parking spaces. The city has now enacted a new law stating that new buildings must have a certain amount of parking space provided for tenants so that's a start to remedy at least one of the problems.

I live in one of these neighborhoods and there are two new such buildings within a two block area. One completed, one not. All tolled they have over 150 units. Less than a mile away, another old house was just demolished in order for another larger apartment building to be crowded in on that spot. Down the street from this one, about two miles another has been built. There are several more within a five mile distance already built and constantly have vacancies.

This rapid race to infill has many concerned. There have been quite a few articles written that Portland is being overbuilt with these large buildings being so close together and so will never be able to be fully occupied. Besides the fact that there are so many apartments, they are small and expensive and are targeted only towards one economic group. The question is, how many of those people are there to fill these high priced apartments especially in the older neighborhoods? Why are so many necessary? And apartments standing empty are not a good thing for anybody.

Some of our city council representatives are concerned about overbuilding. They have even proposed a moratorium on the new construction in neighborhoods which have already been torn apart for the new buildings. Some citizens groups have asked for a consensus on just how much more of this high price housing is needed while so many lower to middle income people are being pushed farther and farther into poor housing at the edge of the city into neighborhoods poorly served by public transportation or grocery stores.

I fail to see where any kind of good urban planning exists when you have such a lopsided situation in housing. So in my opinion, as one who has lived in the same neighborhood for 25 years and has seen a shabby but livable neighborhood gentrified which at first created a nice improvement but then was carried out to an extreme, I just wonder about the future if things continue to go on like this.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-14-2014, 09:58 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,533,646 times
Reputation: 7830
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minervah View Post
Portland OR. Large expensive apartment buildings being built replacing perfectly good single dwelling houses which are being torn down to make way for them. These new buildings are geared towards singles or couples without children. The city is becoming more and more less family friendly as the remaining available houses become more and more scarce and expensive as a result.

No one objects to the buildings going up on abandoned vacant lots that were eyesores. That's an improvement. Those are good changes. But tearing down old craftsman homes in good condition to build a large apartment building that crowds an old neighborhood is just a not good example of neighborhood planning. As someone on the Portland forum recently pointed out, this also changes the entire face of a neighborhood. You lose the ability of what makes the neighborhood that used to be typical of Portland where neighbor knew neighbor either from the small apartment buildings or nearby houses to just a lot of people walking around with their heads down. In other words, like any other impersonal city neighborhood.

Also, the large apartment buildings in old neighborhoods do not have parking which leave very the narrow streets with little parking room and not enough parking spaces. The city has now enacted a new law stating that new buildings must have a certain amount of parking space provided for tenants so that's a start to remedy at least one of the problems.

I live in one of these neighborhoods and there are two new such buildings within a two block area. One completed, one not. All tolled they have over 150 units. Less than a mile away, another old house was just demolished in order for another larger apartment building to be crowded in on that spot. Down the street from this one, about two miles another has been built. There are several more within a five mile distance already built and constantly have vacancies.

This rapid race to infill has many concerned. There have been quite a few articles written that Portland is being overbuilt with these large buildings being so close together and so will never be able to be fully occupied. Besides the fact that there are so many apartments, they are small and expensive and are targeted only towards one economic group. The question is, how many of those people are there to fill these high priced apartments especially in the older neighborhoods? Why are so many necessary? And apartments standing empty are not a good thing for anybody.

Some of our city council representatives are concerned about overbuilding. They have even proposed a moratorium on the new construction in neighborhoods which have already been torn apart for the new buildings. Some citizens groups have asked for a consensus on just how much more of this high price housing is needed while so many lower to middle income people are being pushed farther and farther into poor housing at the edge of the city into neighborhoods poorly served by public transportation or grocery stores.

I fail to see where any kind of good urban planning exists when you have such a lopsided situation in housing. So in my opinion, as one who has lived in the same neighborhood for 25 years and has seen a shabby but livable neighborhood gentrified which at first created a nice improvement but then was carried out to an extreme, I just wonder about the future if things continue to go on like this.
Neighborhoods are always changing, and in Portland the available apartment occupancy is extremely low therefore filling these new units isn't going to be a challenge. Plus these buildings are being built along major transportation routes which can potentially mean more transit riders and the need for more transit which is good for Portland transit system.

And with a city that is fully developed like Portland, not every home is going to make it, occasionally they do get torn down or moved to other locations.

Overall Portland is a great example of urban planning for a city in the US.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-14-2014, 10:03 AM
 
3,836 posts, read 4,716,650 times
Reputation: 2538
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post

Overall Portland is a great example of urban planning for a city in the US.
It's mediocre. Better than most US cities for certain. But too complacent and should be striving to compete with the best Canadian cities and European cities for livability.

Way too many one-way streets - that's low hanging fruit, easily reversible.

The high-hanging fruit is the freeways that choke the downtown and spoil the waterfront. That's a tougher battle - but needs to be fought. Until then, it will never have a chance to achieve true greatness in urban design.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-14-2014, 10:06 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,533,646 times
Reputation: 7830
Quote:
Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
It's mediocre. Better than most US cities for certain. But too complacent and should be striving to compete with the best Canadian cities and European cities for livability.

Way too many one-way streets - that's low hanging fruit, easily reversible.

The high-hanging fruit is the freeways that choke the downtown and spoil the waterfront. That's a tougher battle - but needs to be fought. Until then, it will never have a chance to achieve true greatness in urban design.
Oh, well if you are comparing Portland to Canadian and European cities, it is definitely on the mediocre side. Nothing in the US is as good as those cities.

I think what Portland is striving for is a big city of small urban towns and so far has been doing that very successfully.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-14-2014, 10:18 AM
 
3,836 posts, read 4,716,650 times
Reputation: 2538
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
Oh, well if you are comparing Portland to Canadian and European cities, it is definitely on the mediocre side. Nothing in the US is as good as those cities.

I think what Portland is striving for is a big city of small urban towns and so far has been doing that very successfully.
NYC is a fantastically planned city (not everyone's cup of tea, but its greatness can not be overstated). Arguable Boston, SF, Chicago and DC approach European cities in urban design (notable flaws with each, but generally great places). Portland is a category a step or two down from those cities.

Better than most, huge potential, not there yet.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-14-2014, 10:21 AM
 
Location: Paris
8,133 posts, read 6,683,995 times
Reputation: 3371
One of my pet peeves is slab urbanism, which was very popular over here in the 60s and 70s. The idea was to separate pedestrian and car traffic. In order to do so, a giant concrete slab is built several meters over natural ground. Cars and public transport run underneath and pedestrians walk above, in a car-free environment.
The underground level is often very unpleasant and sometimes noisy. Slabs usually don't age well and need periodic refurbishment. Not much greenery despite the wasted overground space. No on-street shops, they are all concentrated in a centrally located mall. Such neighborhoods are usually pretty quiet (the first Streetview example would be an exception). Seems pretty anti-urban to me despite the high density.

Office district, slab level and ground level (cyclists on both images, which is unusual)
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=la+d%C...9.12,,0,-10.26
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=la+d%C...343.36,,0,6.64

Wanna take a stroll on rue du Javelot?
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=paris+...51.95,,0,10.34

Noisy, unpleasant, car-dominated at ground level
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=front+...,244.1,,0,4.65

Windswept concrete wasteland above the slab. Local shopping mall to the right:
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=front+...4.84,,0,-13.14

Transit hub. Notice the overpasses between residential blocks and the mall:
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=bobign...,71.08,,0,2.51

The Barbican district in London is kinda similar, though greener and overall more pleasant. Probably the last place I'd move to in London within this price tag if I could afford it (it's high-end).
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=barbic...70.36,,0,11.22
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=barbic...183.81,,0,3.77

Belgian one (sadly no overground view)
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=louvai...322.07,,0,-0.3

I don't like districts where pedestrian and motor traffic are segregated, but if I had to choose between the North American skywalk system and the French concrete slab, I think I'd choose the former.

Last edited by Rozenn; 02-14-2014 at 10:34 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-14-2014, 01:08 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,533,646 times
Reputation: 7830
Quote:
Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
NYC is a fantastically planned city (not everyone's cup of tea, but its greatness can not be overstated). Arguable Boston, SF, Chicago and DC approach European cities in urban design (notable flaws with each, but generally great places). Portland is a category a step or two down from those cities.

Better than most, huge potential, not there yet.
I actually have to disagree with you on this one, I think most of Manhattan is well planned, but I don't think the other boroughs are well planned.

Portland is definitely not the same size as cities like Boston, SF, Chicago, and DC, but in its own right it is a well planned city.

Actually I do think SF is well planned, the only rough thing there is dealing with the hills.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-14-2014, 06:42 PM
 
12,301 posts, read 15,202,635 times
Reputation: 8108
Pedestrian malls created by closing streets.
High-rise public housing
Stadia used for both baseball and football.
http://www.urbanrail.net/am/detr/detroit.htm
I know, some will say the whole City of Detroit is a perfect example of bad urban planning.

Last edited by pvande55; 02-14-2014 at 06:45 PM.. Reason: Add line
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Urban Planning
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top