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Old 04-09-2014, 09:45 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
Nobody is trying to impose density on anyone. This is a common theme of your posts-you're so convinced that density is forced on people against their will. Actually, neighborhoods and cities become more dense in response to higher demand for housing. This higher demand is spurred by population growth-an inevitability of human existence. Increased density is not come conspiracy, its a response to more people wanting to live in an area. It is a natural way of growth.
Sure the urbanists try to force density. The cities aren't becoming 'more dense' in response to higher consumer demand. Cities may become more populous but as noted by many desperate urbanist articles - people aren't generally seeking higher density. The theme of many articles and posts is about seeking means (usually government mandates) to try to force density. Indeed that itself becomes the means to try to justify transit.

Quote:
No, sprawl refers to an excessive amount of land under a continuous urban footprint. And it doesn't have negative connotations. For example, New York, a very highly urbanized city, can be referred to as a "sprawling metropolis."
There are different definitions for "sprawl". The term "sprawl" is used primarily in a derogatory term and identified as something that must be restrained or stopped.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
Going to have to disagree here. "Sprawl" is the most popular method of growth, but as we've noticed there is an increasing number of people moving to cities and living there instead of the archetypical single-family picket fenced 2-story suburban home.
Your term of "sprawl" is a city-centric view. Yet the areas you refer to are often not extensions of a city at all. As for stereotype SFH 2-story picket fenced homes - I haven't seen any such houses being built new in many decades. However, if someone has a choice between getting a 40 year old 900 square foot dump in the city or a roomier house with a couple of bathrooms in one of the "sprawl" areas, you'll find most people migrating to the latter - an exodus from the city core even if the latter location is still in the city.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
Furthermore, sprawl can only continue up to a point-eventually, there will be too many cars on the road and not enough infrastructure to support them.
"Sprawl" areas outside a city can become cities themselves. Becoming a city doesn't solve transportation issues.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
Then cities and their metros will have two options: improve road infrastructure by tearing down areas that are already built up, or (gasp!) build transit to take people off the roads and densify low-density areas.
Not everyone is heading into the city. Other options (which already occur naturally) include locating businesses, schools, etc. somewhere besides downtown. Also transit takes up space and requires at least some "tearing down" of areas already built up. Transit requires eminent domain. Don't see why it's worse when the taking is due to a road as opposed to due to tracks, electrical lines, or other transit-related infrastructure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OuttaTheLouBurbs View Post
And seeing how well the former option has worked in the past, I'm going to guess that cities will stick with the latter option.
Cities or transportation districts are spending plenty of money on transit. Cities do not dictate life or transport for the rest of the population and cities rely heavily on a worker population that spends money in the city and gets taxed in the city but for which the city provides zero services.
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Old 04-09-2014, 09:55 AM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,284 posts, read 26,292,241 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
At least if the arguement for transit is to reduce traffic congestion.
Only there's no solid evidence to support that argument.

Quote:
To my knowledge, and correct me if I'm wrong, no transit project or service has ever been the clear direct cause of a substantial drop in traffic congestion. So claiming that a project you favor will reduce congestion is unwise; the data just don't support that claim.
Human Transit: what does transit do about traffic congestion?

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Although, do most Americans live in medium or smaller sized metros? I think you're right, but I'm curious to see how many live in say, the 25 biggest metros.
About 41.5% of Americans live in the country's 25 largest metros, which is just over half of the urbanized population.

When I say a "big" metro, I have the Bay Area, DC or Atlanta in mind. A "medium" metro is Tampa, Charlotte or St. Louis. Though I have to recognize that I grew up in the nation's sixth largest metro, so my standard of "big" may be completely different from someone who grew up in Fayetteville, NC. To them, any city with a pro sports team may be considered "big."

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
In many ways, I find a medium-sized, but dense (as long as there's also decent green space mixed in) and somewhat transit-oriented rather appealing, many of the negatives of density aren't as pronounced in a smaller city.
Charleston?
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Old 04-09-2014, 09:56 AM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IC_deLight View Post
Sure the urbanists try to force density. The cities aren't becoming 'more dense' in response to higher consumer demand. Cities may become more populous but as noted by many desperate urbanist articles - people aren't generally seeking higher density. The theme of many articles and posts is about seeking means (usually government mandates) to try to force density. Indeed that itself becomes the means to try to justify transit.
How can government mandate higher density? Other than an urban growth boundary, I can't think of any in the US. Perhaps you could think of an example. If there wasn't a market demand for it, no one would buy (or rent) high-density housing. Many suburbs have density restrictions. You might think those laws make sense but either way, higher density is restricted far, far more than encouraged. Here's are some cities examples on how high density housing is prevented:

http://oldurbanist.blogspot.com/2014...t-part-ii.html

Again, not commenting whether they are good or bad. My point is that high density is restricted rather than mandated usually. In the middle of a dense city where zoning restrictions permit, as long as there's demand developers will build dense housing. A developer could build two story housing in Manhattan if he wanted to, but that would be stupid.

Quote:
As for stereotype SFH 2-story picket fenced homes - I haven't seen any such houses being built new in many decades. However, if someone has a choice between getting a 40 year old 900 square foot dump in the city or a roomier house with a couple of bathrooms in one of the "sprawl" areas, you'll find most people migrating to the latter - an exodus from the city core even if the latter location is still in the city.
Picket fences are out of style, but two story homes are the usual. Most people would not choose a dump, that's a false dilemna. 900 square feet is spacious for many if they have no children.

Last edited by nei; 04-09-2014 at 10:10 AM..
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Old 04-09-2014, 10:13 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,573,101 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
At least if the arguement for transit is to reduce traffic congestion. Although, do most Americans live in medium or smaller sized metros? I think you're right, but I'm curious to see how many live in say, the 25 biggest metros.



In many ways, I find a medium-sized, but dense (as long as there's also decent green space mixed in) and somewhat transit-oriented rather appealing, many of the negatives of density aren't as pronounced in a smaller city.
That is one of the big factors I like most about Portland, it feels like a medium size city, it has neighborhoods with main street commercial areas that are walkable/bikeable, and transit that is easy to use and get around on. Throw in a tax ride or good legs for biking, and it is an enjoyable city to live in.
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Old 04-09-2014, 10:22 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IC_deLight View Post
Sure the urbanists try to force density. The cities aren't becoming 'more dense' in response to higher consumer demand. Cities may become more populous but as noted by many desperate urbanist articles - people aren't generally seeking higher density. The theme of many articles and posts is about seeking means (usually government mandates) to try to force density. Indeed that itself becomes the means to try to justify transit.



There are different definitions for "sprawl". The term "sprawl" is used primarily in a derogatory term and identified as something that must be restrained or stopped.


Your term of "sprawl" is a city-centric view. Yet the areas you refer to are often not extensions of a city at all. As for stereotype SFH 2-story picket fenced homes - I haven't seen any such houses being built new in many decades. However, if someone has a choice between getting a 40 year old 900 square foot dump in the city or a roomier house with a couple of bathrooms in one of the "sprawl" areas, you'll find most people migrating to the latter - an exodus from the city core even if the latter location is still in the city.


"Sprawl" areas outside a city can become cities themselves. Becoming a city doesn't solve transportation issues.


Not everyone is heading into the city. Other options (which already occur naturally) include locating businesses, schools, etc. somewhere besides downtown. Also transit takes up space and requires at least some "tearing down" of areas already built up. Transit requires eminent domain. Don't see why it's worse when the taking is due to a road as opposed to due to tracks, electrical lines, or other transit-related infrastructure.


Cities or transportation districts are spending plenty of money on transit. Cities do not dictate life or transport for the rest of the population and cities rely heavily on a worker population that spends money in the city and gets taxed in the city but for which the city provides zero services.
40 year old house? That would be a home built in 1974, which was usually suburban in style. Though they do make for great tear down houses depending on their location.

Also cities dictate suburban development as much as they do urban development, which it seems you are more in favor of a city regulating to create more suburban development than urban development.

Another thing, if you don't like urban spaces and density, you can always just never go into those areas and stay in the suburban places you know and like? I rarely make trips out to suburban areas because I typically have no need for them unless I am visiting a family member or something that lives in a suburban area.

Last edited by nei; 04-09-2014 at 10:25 AM.. Reason: unnecesay
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Old 04-09-2014, 10:41 AM
 
2,825 posts, read 3,357,519 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
How can government mandate higher density? Other than an urban growth boundary, I can't think of any in the US. Perhaps you could think of an example. If there wasn't a market demand for it, no one would buy (or rent) high-density housing. Many suburbs have density restrictions. You might think those laws make sense but either way, higher density is restricted far, far more than encouraged. Here's are some cities examples on how high density housing is prevented:

Old Urbanist: The Zoning Straitjacket, Part II

Again, not commenting whether they are good or bad. My point is that high density is restricted rather than mandated usually. In the middle of a dense city where zoning restrictions permit, as long as there's demand developers will build dense housing. A developer could build two story housing in Manhattan if he wanted to, but that would be stupid.
Not really demand. Just like people aren't really demanding HOA-burdened property. That's all that's been allowed to be built in "sprawl" areas in the last several decades. New development in town is also HOA or condo. People need housing and are limited to selecting from what is available.

One way condos are forced is through platting restrictions. There are limits on the restrictions that a city can impose when separate lots are involved so the "workaround" is to eliminate traditional "lots" and go with a single parcel, "common ownership", and legal structure of condominium. The legal entanglement of these forms of housing tends to be wholly ignored by those claiming to be seeking "traditional" urban housing. Nothing traditional about such housing or legal entanglement. Cities love and encourage this form of housing because of the high tax base per horizontal square foot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
Picket fences are out of style, but two story homes are the usual. Most people would not choose a dump, that's a false dilemna. 900 square feet is spacious for many if they have no children.
It's not a false dilemma - it's the "in town" choice as opposed to the "sprawl" choice. 900 sf isn't near spacious enough for the dollars demanded for these places...although a 900 sf dump non-condo is preferable to a 900 sf condo for the same purchase price.
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Old 04-09-2014, 10:47 AM
 
2,825 posts, read 3,357,519 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
40 year old house? That would be a home built in 1974, which was usually suburban in style. Though they do make for great tear down houses depending on their location.

Also cities dictate suburban development as much as they do urban development, which it seems you are more in favor of a city regulating to create more suburban development than urban development.
If your definition of "suburban" is "outside of the city" then cities have nothing to say about suburban development.
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Old 04-09-2014, 10:53 AM
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
45,992 posts, read 42,058,839 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IC_deLight View Post
Not really demand. Just like people aren't really demanding HOA-burdened property. That's all that's been allowed to be built in "sprawl" areas in the last several decades. New development in town is also HOA or condo. People need housing and are limited to selecting from what is available.

One way condos are forced is through platting restrictions. There are limits on the restrictions that a city can impose when separate lots are involved so the "workaround" is to eliminate traditional "lots" and go with a single parcel, "common ownership", and legal structure of condominium. The legal entanglement of these forms of housing tends to be wholly ignored by those claiming to be seeking "traditional" urban housing. Nothing traditional about such housing or legal entanglement. Cities love and encourage this form of housing because of the high tax base per horizontal square foot.
I'm not too familiar with what you're describing in the last paragraph. Regardless, there are plenty of instances where dense is prohibited, both in cities (see my links) and suburbs.



Quote:
It's not a false dilemma - it's the "in town" choice as opposed to the "sprawl" choice. 900 sf isn't near spacious enough for the dollars demanded for these places...although a 900 sf dump non-condo is preferable to a 900 sf condo for the same purchase price.
That's value judgement on your personal preference. The value is whatever people are willing to pay. I'm personally not interested in more space than 900 sq feet (unless I have children), I'd place the value of a home on other factors.
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Old 04-09-2014, 11:18 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,573,101 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IC_deLight View Post
If your definition of "suburban" is "outside of the city" then cities have nothing to say about suburban development.
True, I rarely care what suburban cities outside of my more urban city is doing. Like you shouldn't care what goes on in the more urban city your suburban cities surround. But I assume you live in a metro of some sort, which probably has zoning regulations, and with those zoning regulations are requirements that push for suburban style development. That is considered a government control on development, even in the suburbs.
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Old 04-09-2014, 11:34 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
I'm not too familiar with what you're describing in the last paragraph. Regardless, there are plenty of instances where dense is prohibited, both in cities (see my links) and suburbs.
Local governments create "density" via their platting authority. If not a condo development, what they try to do is dictate a minimum size lot for "environmental" reasons. (score local government) To meet this lot size requirement the developer will set aside some land for "open space". The "open space" will typically be the parcels that would have been difficult to build on or were otherwise less desirable from the developer's perspective. (score developer) This allows the developer to achieve an "effective lot size" by taking the total number of houses and dividing by the total land area of the subdivision. However, the result is higher density (because of the introduction of "open space" consumes total space in the subdivision)

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
That's value judgement on your personal preference. The value is whatever people are willing to pay. I'm personally not interested in more space than 900 sq feet (unless I have children), I'd place the value of a home on other factors.
In a free market that might be true but the market is hardly free. Nonetheless, most of the individuals posting to this site obviously have far too much time to have jobs or livelihoods that would allow them to purchase housing in many of the more expensive urban areas even if the house was only 900 sf. If you can't pay $1,000 per square foot in Palo Alto or San Francisco you need not worry about purchasing the 900 sf much less something larger than 900 sf in that area. So folks end up living further away ("sprawl") in housing that is less expensive even though it is also roomier.
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