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Old 05-14-2014, 09:52 AM
 
Location: Thunder Bay, ON
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The picture is not as polarized between city and suburbs here in Kitchener-Waterloo, although the census tracts that experienced the biggest drops in median family income were still suburban. They too are relatively blue collar neighbourhoods, built around 1950-1985. In some of these, the housing is poorly connected to the arterials. The smaller collector roads are more accessible to residences, but they don't connect to each other very well, making providing transit somewhat complicated.
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Old 05-20-2014, 08:21 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rnc2mbfl View Post
I haven't read through all the posts in this thread so forgive me if this is redundant.
It would seem to me that with the decline of in-store retail sales across the country that former strip centers and malls provide an enormous opportunity for redevelopment in American suburban areas. If you think about it, malls and strip centers often times sit on key properties with some of the best access and visibility. I think it would shock many Americans to know how much land is probably wasted by many of these surface lot developments.
To a certain extent, the same can be said of many churches in older suburban areas that once served much greater numbers than they do today.
Dead malls are typically a great source for urban district redevelopments.
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Old 03-15-2015, 12:26 PM
 
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Originally Posted by memph View Post

Much of the land in these neighbourhoods is spoken for, so any major changes to resolve these issues would require redevelopment. However, there are relatively few large properties to redevelop, so redevelopment would be slow and piecemeal, and take a long time to make an impact.

Older suburbs would probably be easier to convert to urbanity, I'm talking about 1950s type development. In these, you often have retail, employment and higher density residential along the main roads, and the main roads are pretty well connected to surrounded neighbourhoods. Although the development pattern is typically still autocentric, I think it would be easier to urbanize.
Perhaps urbanization may be TOD (Transit Orientated Development) in a linear form. Creating a sort of commercial strip, but with more mixed uses. I'm thinking that greyfield redevelopment along a road may be easier than acquiring a large block of land,

Perhaps it could be sold as a "shopping street" to those skittish about city life.
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Old 03-16-2015, 08:50 AM
 
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Originally Posted by goofy328 View Post
As far as crime, once the city is destroyed where would one go for theft; people in your city are too poor and do not have anything worth stealing, all of the scrap metal is gone, where else would crime occur? It is unrealistic to assume that the city can continue to contain its crime and that it would never spread out to suburbia.
If the suburban police forces are adequate, and the suburbanites themselves are well armed, then yes, the crime could be contained to Detroit proper. As it stands, Detroit criminals prey upon other Detroit residents.
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Old 03-16-2015, 12:35 PM
 
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Neighborhoods in Seattle tend to have a short shopping street as a focus. Beyond a short space the retail tends to dribble along in an incoherent manner. But at least this type of older development gives people a place to walk to, and can sometimes be convenient.

In the case of one neighborhood, Ballard, the main drag is almost a downtown in itself. It could be the downtown of a large town or a small city.
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Old 03-16-2015, 12:59 PM
 
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Central Avenue as the "urban corridor" of Albuquerque, New Mexico. This connects different areas of urbanization, such as Old Town, Downtown, UNM, etc.
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Old 03-16-2015, 01:49 PM
 
Location: Thunder Bay, ON
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Originally Posted by Tim Randal Walker View Post
Perhaps urbanization may be TOD (Transit Orientated Development) in a linear form. Creating a sort of commercial strip, but with more mixed uses. I'm thinking that greyfield redevelopment along a road may be easier than acquiring a large block of land,

Perhaps it could be sold as a "shopping street" to those skittish about city life.
I think what you're describing can work in older "suburban" neighbourhoods of Toronto like Clairlea or Eglinton East. The areas around Central Avenue in Albuquerque are similar.

Toronto's "snout house suburbs" though, which have experienced significant declines in income in the last decade, seem like they'd be unlikely to change much.
https://www.google.ca/maps/@43.74869.../data=!3m1!1e3
https://www.google.ca/maps/@43.64840.../data=!3m1!1e3
https://www.google.ca/maps/@43.82458.../data=!3m1!1e3

The other thing of course is that for TOD you need transit, and building frequent and fairly rapid transit is expensive, so some places will have to make do with >30min frequency local buses.

What many American cities have is what I think are referred to "highway strips" which are highway-like roads lined with auto-oriented retail and surrounded by a usually a mix of older low density subdivisions and newer smaller lot subdivisions and garden apartment and townhouse complexes. In terms of street layout, these can be better than Toronto's "snout house suburbs" but the "highways" are usually more hostile to pedestrians than Toronto's suburban arterials (which are already pretty terrible). The highway strips would need to be modified to slow down traffic and be more pedestrian friendly if they are to be urbanized.
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Old 03-16-2015, 03:39 PM
 
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Indeed, memph. In Seattle the neighborhoods have older (pre World War II) housing, single family homes with yards. With essentially what could be called a shopping street.

As for Albuquerque's Central Avenue, the character of an area depends on where you are. Across the street from the UNM campus, the urbanized area is one block deep, on the edge of a quiet residential neighborhood of single family homes, with yards. On the other hand, Old Town is an odd mix. At the edge of Old Town is a nice city park, several museums, a winery/restaurant, a large modern hotel…and a desolate industrial area.

Transit on Central Avenue is the bus.

It seems to be possible to create a linear development-quite narrow-that feels like a busy city street, while the surrounding neighborhood is a quiet residential area. How far can an urban corridor go and remain coherent? In the case of Albuquerque, the main drag runs through several different urban areas, like beads on a necklace.

Last edited by Tim Randal Walker; 03-16-2015 at 03:57 PM..
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Old 03-16-2015, 04:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by memph View Post

What many American cities have is what I think are referred to "highway strips" which are highway-like roads lined with auto-oriented retail and surrounded by a usually a mix of older low density subdivisions and newer smaller lot subdivisions and garden apartment and townhouse complexes. In terms of street layout, these can be better than Toronto's "snout house suburbs" but the "highways" are usually more hostile to pedestrians than Toronto's suburban arterials (which are already pretty terrible). The highway strips would need to be modified to slow down traffic and be more pedestrian friendly if they are to be urbanized.
There may not be enough demand for city living to truly urbanize long stretches of road.

Last edited by Tim Randal Walker; 03-16-2015 at 04:34 PM..
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Old 03-16-2015, 04:57 PM
 
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General discussion of TOD.
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