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Old 05-03-2014, 08:58 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,514,457 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
Zoning doesn't prevent me from walking anywhere. It doesn't prevent "destinations" from cropping up in the commercial districts that border my residential neighborhood. What it does prevent is my neighbor turning his house into a butcher shop or a dry cleaners. And isn't it wonderful that we live in a country that protects homeowners who do not want to live next to a dry cleaners or pizza parlor?


There's a shopping center behind my house. I can hop the fence or walk around. What's your point?


Well, once again, not all suburbs are the same.


My Cincinnati neighborhood was built in the 1920s. Even city planners back then were wise enough to separate residential and commercial uses, and zone in neighborhood business districts so that people could live close by to the services they need, but not on top of them.
That depends, sure one might not want a butcher shop next door, but the moment those daily destinations are zoned to be over 1/2 mile away, the efficiency in walking drops off very quickly.

Having to "hop a fence" is a sign of poor pedestrian planning. There could have also been pedestrian way added if need be, but it sounds like you might live in a streetcar suburb, which isn't the same as the suburbs that were built in the later part of the 20th century.

Once again, I am not saying all suburbs are the same. You guys need to stop thinking in absolutes, many and most are not the same as all.

Yes, separating zoning can be good, segregating zoning can be bad. By this I mean, making it so that walking from one type of zoning to another is inefficient and sometimes lacking the needed infrastructure. Having commercial space behind your house makes me believe that you live in a streetcar suburb that does actually have destinations within walking distances and isn't a cul-de-sac suburb.
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Old 05-03-2014, 09:10 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
32,371 posts, read 59,817,368 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
The point is it makes walking longer, especially if you can't hop the fence. [with groceries!].
And cat litter! LOL Oh, wait, the stores near me don't sell cat litter. Bummer.

Oh, and if I do ever hop the fence, with or without groceries, I'll have the neighbor take video and I'll share it with you.

Quote:
Some people seem like the want to live on top of the stores on main street, I don't myself. But I don't see why that should be prevented or how that's wise.
Of course I didn't mean "on top of" literally, although that's certainly possible. And if someone wants to live on top of - or next door to - a commercial business, then they certainly are free to do so.

My point was that zoning prevents mixing uses in order to protect property owners who see those mixed uses as incompatible.

Better?

Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
Once again, I am not saying all suburbs are the same. You guys need to stop thinking in absolutes, many and most are not the same as all.
I'm glad you finally get it.
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Old 05-03-2014, 09:16 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
45,987 posts, read 41,947,535 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rozenn View Post
Aggressive drivers I don't know, but some drivers won't pay enough attention in places where pedestrian traffic is very low. I once crossed this street after sunset (with the green signal of course!) and a driver turning left from the main road (D915) to the side street (D1) hit me with his left rear mirror - I was walking from right to left. He apologized and said that he hadn't seen me. It didn't occur to me that he wouldn't stop. City drivers, while considerably more aggressive, are more accustomed to pedestrians.
That link is a cute looking town! I've noticed the same difference with drivers more accustomed to pedestrians. NYC drivers are aggressive but are usually aware of pedestrians. Long Island drivers less so, though still kinda aggressive. I remember one nasty incident crossing (with the light) on a busy road and cars with the light wanted to turn into where I was walking. They saw me. I stopped briefly and stared. One other thing that used to bug me is drivers that block the crosswalk while looking to turn. Never sure whether to detour in front or behind them. I'm a bit more understanding now that I drive, I use to assume it was just carelessness.

Quote:
Sometimes I have my rights activist moments, as Litehop743 said. Once crossed this 2-lane street in an industrial estate
Would have assumed it's a park at first glance.

Quote:
Noticed that in Switzerland most pedestrians throw themsleves on the crosswalk without thinking twice, often forcing drivers to brake swiftly. In neighboring countries, pedestrians wait for a driver to stop or at least proceeed with more caution. Thus drivers pay less attention.
Generally assume a driver isn't supposed to stop for a yield to pedestrian in crosswalk unless the pedestrian enters the crosswalk.

Quote:
As for the links, the 5th avenue looks definitely more pedestrian-friendly than the 4th. I have a similar road to the 4th avenue nearby and avoid it like the plague, though there's not much to do there. Shops are concentrated on much narrower street (quite different from the 5th ave still). One advantage it seems to have, at least considering NYC's humid summers, is trees. Plus I imagine that the 5th would still be pretty busy.
Different in the sense as much narrower, or just a different style? 5th avenue has more trees northward, where it is busy and also a wealthier neighborhood (maybe connected?):

https://maps.google.com/maps?q=Brook...,,0,-9.23&z=16

Quote:
What about bicycles? Here right turn on red is prohibited, unless there's a separate set of lights with a blinking yellow light for those who turn right. But it is sometimes allowed for bicycles only. Most pedestrians aren't aware of this and I imagine that conflicts between jaywalkers and hurried cyclists happen from time to time.
There isn't a separate rule for right turn on red for bicycles, though there should be. I ignore no right turn on red signs on a bicycles, doubt anyone would care. A friend in NYC actually got a ticket from the police for making a right turn on red on a bicycle. Because the NYPD [NYC police] doesn't like bicycle or needed to make a ticket quota.
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Old 05-03-2014, 10:29 AM
 
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
12,582 posts, read 15,050,467 times
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Nice scenery and away from cars and traffic.
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Old 05-03-2014, 10:40 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,995 posts, read 102,568,112 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
suburbs that were built in the later part of the 20th century.
(Note, later undefined)

Once again, I am not saying all suburbs are the same. You guys need to stop thinking in absolutes, many and most are not the same as all.
Huh?

Ohiogirl81:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
[Ronald Reagan] There you go again ... [/Ronald Reagan]

You need to be specific about what kind of suburb you're vilifying at the moment, because people can and do walk in my suburb, and in every other suburb I've ever lived in, and they can and do walk around in the residential neighborhoods.

If I'm to walk to the produce market a few blocks away, for instance - or to the diner or the donut place or the barbecue restaurant or the convenience store or my dentist or the dry cleaners or the grocery store or the zoo or the state driver's license place or the beauty parlor or the guy who fixes my computer or the thrift shop or the liquor store or the butcher shop - how the hell do I get there if I don't walk through the residential neighborhood first?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
You need to get out more if you've observed no one walking in a suburb.

Nothing odd about them. In my neighborhood, it's rare to see no one on the sidewalks during the day.

No. You walk when all those things I mentioned are within five or six blocks of your house. Even if you're walking through five or six residential blocks to get there.

Again, you need to get out more. Not all suburbs are "spread out". All those places I mentioned are clustered within two or three blocks of one another, and four or five blocks from my house.


That's why I'm saying - and what some people refuse to believe - that not all suburbs are alike. Not even those built after 1970. Not every suburban neighborhood is a cul-de-sac built in a disconnected cornfield attached only to a busy six-lane street.

With no sidewalks.

Generalizations about suburbs - or about anything, really - make for a poor argument.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
Zoning doesn't prevent me from walking anywhere. It doesn't prevent "destinations" from cropping up in the commercial districts that border my residential neighborhood. What it does prevent is my neighbor turning his house into a butcher shop or a dry cleaners. And isn't it wonderful that we live in a country that protects homeowners who do not want to live next to a dry cleaners or pizza parlor?


There's a shopping center behind my house. I can hop the fence or walk around. What's your point?


Well, once again, not all suburbs are the same.


My Cincinnati neighborhood was built in the 1920s. Even city planners back then were wise enough to separate residential and commercial uses, and zone in neighborhood business districts so that people could live close by to the services they need, but not on top of them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
We don't need to get into any kind of debate at all. We just need to acknowledge that not all suburbs evolved in the same way. There may be some commonalities - it's safe to say that density is generally lower than in urban development - but those commonalities aren't as numerous as some people seem to think they are.

Even my mom's street, built up in the late 50s and early 60s, is four or five blocks from the town's business district. My sister's really suburban development of four-bedroom 1960s colonial houses is only a 15-minute walk in three directions from numerous grocery stores and shopping centers - cul de sacs, sidewalks, crosswalks, playgrounds, elementary schools, and the whole nine yards.

You can't make blanket statements about suburbs. You just can't.


urbanlife78:

Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
Of course not all suburbs are alike, but the majority of them in this country are cul-de-sac suburbs that have poor walking connections, with large roads surrounding each suburban neighborhood, and zoning extremely segregated. You can find this type of suburban area in just about any city in this country.

Sure you can find suburban neigborhoods that have easy access to nearby commercial that makes it easy for one to walk to, but those are not common neighborhoods in the suburbs, but they should be.
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
I wish suburbs from 1960 to today were built like this, there wouldn't be an issue if this were the case, but I have been in too many suburbs across this country which suggests they have not been built like how you are suggesting.

In the past decade there has been changes to the types of suburban development options as more people prefer neighborhoods with things within walking distances.
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
And most suburbs are not designed to be walkable because zoning is often times segregated, and cul-de-sacs make it difficult to walk to places efficiently.
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
I would consider Hawthorne to be more of an inner city neighborhood, or a streetcar suburb neighborhood over suburbs typically found outside of the inner city.

Again, if suburbs were designed like Hawthorne, we wouldn't be talking about the problems with suburbs.
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
Yes, and suburbs tend to do segregated zoning and cul-de-sac developments.
Katiana:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
"most newer suburbs"? Do you really think that "most newer suburbs" across the country are alike? Here in the Wild West, "most newer suburbs", meaning built since about 1960 onward, have housing built on small lots, well under 1/4 acre, multi-family housing, sidewalks, parks and open space, and believe it or not, people do not have to drive 10 miles to go to the grocery store. A grocery is usually on of the first businesses to move in to a new development.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
All suburbs are different! I don't understand why "we" consider suburbs a "problem".
munchitup:
Quote:
Originally Posted by munchitup View Post
FWIW I live in a very walkable suburb. They definitely exist.
Minervah:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minervah View Post
You are exactly right. I am moving to a Cleveland suburb, Cleveland Heights, to a bustling neighborhood that has a supermarket, bus service, restaurants, a bookstore, little ma and pa shops, lots of grass and trees and everything my city neighborhood in Portland OR where I live now has to offer. People who lump all suburbs into one mold are obviously not educated in urban planning which also includes the various suburban areas that surround urban areas.
Now who's talking in absolutes? No one really, but one person seems to be more towards the "absolute" end of the absolutist continuum, and saying "yes but", than the others quoted here.

Last edited by Katarina Witt; 05-03-2014 at 11:02 AM..
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Old 05-03-2014, 11:55 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
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Ok. Getting back to those streets views I posted.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rozenn View Post
Only #3 and 5 are built at a human scale and aimed at pedestrians, so they would rank first. I think #6 would rank third, the traffic looks heavy on the main boulevard but the two "buffer lanes" on each side would help isolate from traffic. Shops are aimed at pedestrians. Though if I had nothing to do on the boulevard itslef, I'd try toavoid it. At least, none of the suburban ones lack pedestrian infrastructure, so it would depend on the intensity of motor traffic. I wouldn't mind walking along the 2-lane road in example #2, but it looks quite impractical given the lack of crosswalks, at least when traffic is high enough that there aren't enough breaks. #1 and 4 look the least pedestrian-friendly. Like #2, all the shops are better reached by car, but the heavy traffic would be an additional annoyance. In places, they put a grass strip to isolated the sidewalk from the roadway. Making it wider and planting some shrubs here and there would make it more agreeable to walk along, though still not pedestrian-friendly. I imagine even nearby residents shop there by car.
I would agree with your ranking, though I didn't think that #2 was that bad. There are crosswalks not to far away, but yea looking more carefully some intersections don't have one. Road is narrow, so it's not too hard to find gaps. It's not really a street most people would walk much, but it's not bad for a short walk for a local, or say for a teenager without a car. I'd be tempted to rank #6 worse than #2 for unpleasantness of that road. But there are far more stores in the local area. And obviously more people do walk there, and walking is the main access for the stores. The wide road in a high density environment (the immediate surroundings are as dense a typical spot in the city of Paris) is a recipe for a pedestrian hazard. Nicknamed the "Boulevard of Death"

The Iris Weinshall Legacy: Queens Boulevard | Streetsblog New York City

Before taking over DOT, the Queens Boulevard death machine was killing an average of 9 pedestrians a year, including an astounding death toll of 18 in 1997 alone. Once DOT began focusing on pedestrian safety along Queens Boulevard, the death rate fell to just over three per year.


BOULEVARD OF DEATH. Queens Boulevard Part 1 | | Forgotten New YorkForgotten New York

There's a subway line underneath its length. 1930s planning before expressways became common. Of course, maybe #1 and #4 are just as dangerous for pedestrians, but there are just far fewer pedestrians. For #1, the local residential roads aren't well connected to the street, making harder to walk even if the local want to walk. Not that the locals do walk to those streets. I'd say #4 it's quite as bad as #1. For the two pedestrian-oriented views, #3 is surrounded by low density development, most drive and park to access the area. The density around #5 is much higher, the locals are in walking distance and many arrive by transit (there's also a subway undereneath that commercial street).

Edit: Note for #6, the Queens Blvd view, at the corner there's both a movie theater and a supermarket without parking. Above the supermarket is a new high rise sprouting above it joining the many other ugly high rises living the boulevard. That neighborhood has the same pedestrian oriented street right parellel to more car oriented street. Here's it's more walkable, or at least pedestrian friendly street:

https://maps.google.com/maps?q=Queen...7,,0,0.73&z=16

Hmm. A city neighborhood has both a Bannana Republic and Victoria Secret?

Last edited by nei; 05-03-2014 at 02:48 PM..
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Old 05-03-2014, 12:16 PM
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
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
I ask these questions because this is the type of suburbs I grew up in, and they are the type of suburbs I have seen across this country. Had we still built suburbs like we did during the streetcar suburb era, we would have much better walking neighborhoods, and you would be able to increase the density of your home and add a business (which sounds like Cincinnati might have regressive zoning laws.)
Not sure what suburbs you have seen, but if you're basing from where you grew up (Virginia Beach), you're going by the country which has the least pedestrian friendly suburbs in the country. Other parts of the country have their share of pedestrian-hostile suburbs, but there's often a mix. Still, I think a common situation is a long walk to some stores, which are on roads with infrequent crosswalks. Not a situation which gets lots of pedestrians. The streetcar-era suburbs varied, streetcar suburbs of Philadelphia were much denser than many cities in the interior of the country.

As for Portland's Hawthrone District, by built density and general form it didn't seem drastically from parts of Long Island, it didn't feel like a large contrast to what I would think of as "suburbia". The more walkable parts of Long Island are similar in density to Portland outside downtown, roughly the density where you could support most people living within 1/2 mile of a business district:

What makes a place or space walkable?

But the Long Island spot isn't very cutsey, just a bunch of stores pressed against a busy road:

https://maps.google.com/maps?q=resta...,97.04,,0,2.19

Hawthorne looks much cuter in its busier sections:

https://maps.google.com/maps?q=South...274.57,,0,0.09

and more like a town center. The shop density gets lower going east, looks like a mix of shops and residences. I could find Long Island areas that more of a main street feel, too, though most don't live near those. Of course, the types of businesses and the general culture between the two are rather different.
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Old 05-03-2014, 01:01 PM
 
56,587 posts, read 80,870,855 times
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In this edition, I'm just going to ask the same question, but use a couple of different sets. First, I'll show some popular urban neighborhoods and in the second set, I'll use some small cities between 10-30,000 people. Just be clear, I'm only using Upstate NY locations due to familiarity.

Urban neighborhoods
https://www.google.com/maps/@42.9222...bbQM5rU5FQ!2e0

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.0400...Gy_6aK29FQ!2e0

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.1481...UhLBmbsm2w!2e0

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Up...8c6f5a3f9202c1

https://www.google.com/maps/@42.6543...EE89hKvsbQ!2e0

Smaller cities
https://www.google.com/maps/@42.9317...BiMpVsu5gw!2e0

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Co...5685e564bc44ab

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.0823...PLg-7Znevw!2e0

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Wa...83c028ea085e4b

https://www.google.com/maps/@42.8666...TgSAq0gv3w!2e0

https://www.google.com/maps/@43.4553...bUxbbQgEwA!2e0

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Co...d383c6d27fe71b

https://www.google.com/maps/place/El...fc6630263a3abf

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Pl...b0e8a1c5537415
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Old 05-03-2014, 02:34 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,995 posts, read 102,568,112 times
Reputation: 33059
^^Not too many people in most of those pictures. Now I don't think that means the areas aren't walkable.
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Old 05-03-2014, 02:39 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

Over $104,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum and additional contests are planned
 
Location: Long Island / NYC
45,987 posts, read 41,947,535 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
^^Not too many people in most of those pictures. Now I don't think that means the areas aren't walkable.
His Buffalo one had some, especially if you moved up the street. Some the views can biased by time of day. I would say the Buffalo is the most walkable of the bunch, though not just for that reason alone. A few of the ones I posted had people on the street, for example the "#5" view from my links.
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