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Old 03-09-2014, 01:53 PM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,248 posts, read 26,214,003 times
Reputation: 11701

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New infrastructure isn't really what's needed. Children are what's needed. And no matter how many stairs you paint to resemble piano keys, the economics of gentrification dictate that inner cities trend towards the young and childless.

Besides, I think today's paranoid parents would be too afraid to have their children play out in the streets of most inner cities. Most of my co-workers (who live in the suburbs) express concern about someone jumping out of a dark, tinted vehicle and snatching their snowflakes away. If they're worried about that happening in Jersey, Westchester or Long Island, then they sure as hell won't feel comfortable with their kids taking solo trips to the store in Bushwick.

Kids will have fun no matter what anyway.


Intro 2 Crooklyn - YouTube
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Old 03-09-2014, 02:11 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,981 posts, read 102,527,356 times
Reputation: 33045
A friend of mine posted this on facebook yesterday. America's Weird, Enduring Love Affair With Cars and Houses - Atlantic Mobile

Read the comments. It's the schools, stupid (to paraphrase Pres. Clinton). The cities would be more kid-friendly if the schools were better. And not just the charter and magnet schools. There needs to be a place in a "good school" for every kid.
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Old 03-09-2014, 02:28 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,164 posts, read 29,645,043 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
A friend of mine posted this on facebook yesterday. America's Weird, Enduring Love Affair With Cars and Houses - Atlantic Mobile

Read the comments. It's the schools, stupid (to paraphrase Pres. Clinton). The cities would be more kid-friendly if the schools were better. And not just the charter and magnet schools. There needs to be a place in a "good school" for every kid.
In California, the schools are generally crappy the question becomes schools or commute. You might find good schools but they might be 35 miles from your job. Or the housing prices are $1m for something crappy. You can't win so you pick your poison. Some people leave the state. CA is doing a great job of pushing out middle class families. Everywhere is expensive, the price for a good school district is out of reach for anyone below about the top 10-15% so everyone else has to make do with average schools and hope to improve them or leave the state.

So I guess I would say school quality is important, but the sacrifices are pretty huge particularly here in the Bay Area. As they say the kids who excel have involved parents do average schools with a shorter commute could win out over better schools in a far out school district.
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Old 03-09-2014, 06:16 PM
 
8,328 posts, read 14,554,265 times
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The kids who excel have involved parents. Judging from the parents of "urban" kids I know, that's a more important factor than the quality of the school.
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Old 03-09-2014, 06:45 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,981 posts, read 102,527,356 times
Reputation: 33045
Quote:
Originally Posted by wburg View Post
The kids who excel have involved parents. Judging from the parents of "urban" kids I know, that's a more important factor than the quality of the school.
It's a factor, but it's not the whole story. If the school is crap, they kid is going to learn crap. I always love how people with no kids and little, if any, background in education know all about education.
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Old 03-13-2014, 05:47 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ
1,070 posts, read 2,364,441 times
Reputation: 1420
One of my friends in Germany lives on a street much like a Dutch Woonerf.



The idea is simple: take a normal neighborhood street and make it more pedestrian friendly. The basic idea is to limit vehicle traffic to a single-wide lane of travel. Planters, trees, parking spaces, benches, and whatever else creates a winding lane that forces people to slow down. By making it narrow, oncoming traffic must stop and pull to the side in order to pass, bringing cars down to pedestrian speeds. Ideally, the road surface would be stone (cobblestone or red brick are commonly used in Europe). The idea is to disrupt visual cues that would identify the street as a roadway for cars. Designs painted on concrete can give the same visual effect.

Check out 7th Street in downtown Tempe, AZ (Google Streetview). While it's not a neighborhood street, the same idea is in effect. Lines between "sidewalk" and "road" are blurred. There are no signs or lane paint, making the street disorienting to traffic. I still remember the first time I turned onto 7th Street -- I was trying to circle back around to get to the post office, and wound up on it. I thought I missed a "do not enter" sign and wound up on the sidewalk, until I noticed a few cars parked on the "street". I proceeded very slowly until I was at the other end, with my eyes peeled for pedestrians and cyclists.

While a Woonerf street would be utterly stupid for major through streets, redesigning neighborhood side streets would give kids a space to "play" and neighbors to socialize. It'd successfully slow traffic in residential areas, and even provide more parking!
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