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Old 03-27-2014, 05:09 PM
 
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I'm going to go ahead and make a prediction that eventually, cities will reach critical mass and will eventually have to demolish existing development to make room for denser development for residents and businesses. My question is-will they do this in the cities, and demolish existing structures there, or will they go for the less built-up areas instead and build those up (which seems more logical IMO)? If the latter, how will urban planners cope with the large parking lots, expansive office parks, cul-de-sacs, and other characteristics of typical suburbia when making a more dense area? How do you think it would be done, and how would you think it should be done? And would anyone happen to know of any real-life examples of this happening?
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Old 03-27-2014, 05:37 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
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Well here is an interesting proposal:
What Silicon Valley Would Look Like if Tech Companies Built Themselves Cities | Co.Exist | ideas + impact
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Old 03-27-2014, 05:44 PM
 
Location: The City
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
this is sort of interesting. Comcast is building what they are billing as the first vertical tech park in the world (not sure if that is true)

Am curious on this thread overall so will check back

BTW here is the CTIC plan if interested

Comcast to Expand Philadelphia Presence with State-of-the-Art, $1.2 Billion
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Old 03-27-2014, 05:50 PM
 
Location: The City
22,339 posts, read 32,187,488 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
I'm going to go ahead and make a prediction that eventually, cities will reach critical mass and will eventually have to demolish existing development to make room for denser development for residents and businesses. My question is-will they do this in the cities, and demolish existing structures there, or will they go for the less built-up areas instead and build those up (which seems more logical IMO)? If the latter, how will urban planners cope with the large parking lots, expansive office parks, cul-de-sacs, and other characteristics of typical suburbia when making a more dense area? How do you think it would be done, and how would you think it should be done? And would anyone happen to know of any real-life examples of this happening?
Look at Tysons Corner in NOVA

Tysons Comprehensive Plan*- Fairfax County, Virginia

the DC may have some of the bet US example of this type of thing today
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Old 03-27-2014, 05:56 PM
 
Location: Valdosta (Atlanta Native)
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http://goo.gl/maps/8xnQL

What can you really do with this, and the areas around it.
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Old 03-27-2014, 07:02 PM
 
Location: Thunder Bay, ON
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I think retrofitting suburbs for transit is going to be one of the biggest obstacles.

Take for example this suburban area near me: http://goo.gl/maps/pSvN2

Block Line in some ways is a location road on which to run a bus route. It would connect the SW suburbs to the LRT line through a relatively direct route, and also connects to other similar roads. However, the connections between Block Line nearby neighbourhoods is not too great. Block Line currently has relatively few destinations along it, mostly you just have houses turning their backs to it. The lack of major destinations or major density makes it relatively unviable for an express bus route or BRT/LRT, and the lack of connections to the neighbourhood means it won't make a very good local bus route either.

Collector roads in these neighbourhoods like Erinbrook, Laurentian and Rittenhouse might make good local bus routes on the basis that they have a lot of connections to their respective neighbourhoods with high intersection densities... Except for the fact that any bus route running along these collectors would be highly circuitous and not very efficient for getting from A to B.

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. 1960s development is often still not too bad. 1970s-1980s development is pretty bad though, and I don't think it will be urbanized any time soon, especially since it's usually located further from the urban core. 21st century development around here generally doesn't have a too bad street network, but it's located furthest from the urban core, so is not likely to urbanize, and is dense enough that I think redevelopment is unlikely.

Basically, as I see it, whether or not redevelopment is viable is largely a factor of land values and built density. If you have a low built density and high land values, there is good potential for intensification. If you have low land values and high built densities, further intensification is highly unlikely. I think most cities have land values that are increasingly higher closer to the core, at least that's largely true here. As for built densities, around here they're highest in downtown, then decreasing as you go further out until you reach 1960s development, which is the least dense, then it gradually increases as you go further out past that into the newest greenfield development.

So around here, I would expect relatively little redevelopment in areas built after about 1965. There might be a few exceptions, where for whatever reason, you have peaks in land value outside the older urban cores, but I think most of the potential is in the urban and older suburban neighbourhoods.
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Old 03-27-2014, 08:39 PM
 
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How about not? You know, some of us are living in these areas and wouldn't appreciate radical urbanists coming in, taking our homes, and building their highly-dense dream cities on the land. We suburbanites don't try to bulldoze cities and replace them with single-family detached homes with 3-car garages on quarter-acre lots, do we? (Well, maybe Detroit)
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Old 03-27-2014, 08:59 PM
 
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Retrofitting doesn't necessarily require demolition, and if the need to retrofit springs from a crisis of energy, of materials or economic collapse, it may not be possible. Besides, the last time we tried demolishing and rebuilding our cities we ended up with the status quo of sprawl. Besides, traditional downtowns and historic central cities already have much of the infrastructure needed for walkability, while all but the older suburbs (and maybe a few forward-thinking newer suburbs) simply don't. Instead of using old-line 1950s "energy and materials are cheap, the built environment is worthless" mindset, we can adapt our cities to new uses, and fill in spaces where necessary, like on parking lots and the footprints of underutilized highways. Convert excess office space to residential, industrial spaces to commercial, and mix uses liberally instead of a single-use mindset.

Suburbs can generate mixed-use zones without much need for demolition--they have plenty of room on those superabundant parking lots! McMansions can be subdivided into apartments the way that old 19th Century mansions were, although the newer houses built of drywall and OSB might not last much longer than a typical 30 year mortgage before starting to fall apart in a way that houses with brick, old-growth timbers and plaster walls don't until they're well over a century old--if not well-maintained by their owners, in which case 150 years is just enough to get their second wind.
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:07 PM
 
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People choose to live in the burbs because they want to qualities of an burb, big house, large yard, space between you and your neighbors and so on. They don't want urbanity and would block it.
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:21 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wburg View Post
Besides, traditional downtowns and historic central cities already have much of the infrastructure needed for walkability, while all but the older suburbs (and maybe a few forward-thinking newer suburbs) simply don't.
Suburbanites don't need walkability. We have cars. Parking spots. Garages, even.

Quote:
Suburbs can generate mixed-use zones without much need for demolition--they have plenty of room on those superabundant parking lots!
We're using those parking lots to park our cars in.

Quote:
McMansions can be subdivided into apartments the way that old 19th Century mansions were,
Occupado. Suburbanites are living in those McMansions.

Quote:
although the newer houses built of drywall and OSB might not last much longer than a typical 30 year mortgage
The Levittowns and the ticky-tacky little boxes of Daly City still stand, as has been pointed out multiple times on this forum.
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