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Old 07-26-2014, 03:53 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 Katiana View Post
^^NYC is the largest city in the US, population-wise. It's also one of the oldest. I know of no cities, particularly west of the Appalachian Mountains (e.g. Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Cleveland and all points west) that were ever intended to be as dense. Most midwestern cities, including Chicago, started out as agribusiness centers. LA is another outlier, but for some reason is also frequently used as an example. (An example of urban sprawl, that is.) I know enough about statistics to know that you frequently leave off the extremes. In any event, I think the statement about achieving Manhattan density is irrelevant. Not every city is trying to achieve that, or wants to do so.
First, the US has rather low density cities for developed world standards. (Although no British city approaches NYC densities) though in general it seems like it is implied the discussion is US-only. You leave off the extremes if you're trying to discuss and focus on the average places. Many posters, including myself are not. I talk about places I'm interested in. Perhaps I should talk more on London more so it would be obvious I'm saying little about the typical American location. Maybe that would clear up confusion?

Some cities have areas near the downtown where plenty don't have cars and space is at a premium. Requiring parking in those areas may be a bad fit. NYC doesn't require residential parking near the center, it limits it a max of 1 per 5 units (a bit higher depending on the neighborhood).

 
Old 07-26-2014, 03:54 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
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
It's a fictitious law though.

Seattle's downtown certainly is no Manhattan. It does not have such a thing as parking minimums. There are parking minimums in other parts of the city where Manhattan-like density would not make sense, but not in downtown.
I'm rather surprised about Seattle, I think Chicago's downtown or near downtown does have parking minimums. Boston used to, but got rid of them.
 
Old 07-26-2014, 03:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stateofnature View Post
In most places in America cars are a more convenient option than transit, but that's not because cars are inherently more convenient. They are more convenient in certain contexts. In the context of Manhattan, transit is usually more convenient than cars.
Cars are inherently more convenient. Public transit works by STOPING and letting people board/un-board and by following an regular route and is tied to an schedule.

The automobile does not stop until it reaches it's destination can alter routes as needed and is available for immediate departure.

Some environments will hamper the car such as bridges that constrain traffic or islands surrounded by lots of water, but even Manhattan has lots of people driving. Sure you can live without an car within the city of Chicago, but the trade off is that it is going to take you longer to do most commutes. Is it worth it? For some yes, but for many others no. The only commute where public transit wins is to the loop at the height of rush hour by rail. Do anything else or drive to the loop outside of rush and the car will be faster.

Now in some area like Manhattan and the loop land values are high and therefore free parking is unavailable. In this context public transit is being used to save money for people who work in that area and don't need immediate access to an car. However land values are not that expensive everywhere and people actually do like some SPACE between them and their neighbors. This is why there are also less dense mostly residential portions of any city and burbs. The trade off again is without the car you are limited to staying in said high density area because you can't access jobs, resources or other things in lower density areas because as density drop so does the availability of public transit.
 
Old 07-26-2014, 04:12 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
I'm rather surprised about Seattle, I think Chicago's downtown or near downtown does have parking minimums. Boston used to, but got rid of them.
Interesting.

The majority of Bay Area cities have exemptions for downtown/transit proximity for minimum parking as well. It's very common here. I'm not aware of any of them having parking maximums like Seattle does downtown though.
 
Old 07-26-2014, 04:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Interesting.

The majority of Bay Area cities have exemptions for downtown/transit proximity for minimum parking as well. It's very common here. I'm not aware of any of them having parking maximums like Seattle does downtown though.
For Chicago parking is required in residential buildings downtown. There are ways to reduce the amount of parking if needed but you are not going to plop an building anywhere in Chicago without parking in the name of density and not have some hops to jump through.
 
Old 07-26-2014, 04:55 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chirack View Post
Cars are inherently more convenient. Public transit works by STOPING and letting people board/un-board and by following an regular route and is tied to an schedule.

The automobile does not stop until it reaches it's destination can alter routes as needed and is available for immediate departure.

Some environments will hamper the car such as bridges that constrain traffic or islands surrounded by lots of water, but even Manhattan has lots of people driving. Sure you can live without an car within the city of Chicago, but the trade off is that it is going to take you longer to do most commutes. Is it worth it? For some yes, but for many others no. The only commute where public transit wins is to the loop at the height of rush hour by rail. Do anything else or drive to the loop outside of rush and the car will be faster.

Now in some area like Manhattan and the loop land values are high and therefore free parking is unavailable. In this context public transit is being used to save money for people who work in that area and don't need immediate access to an car. However land values are not that expensive everywhere and people actually do like some SPACE between them and their neighbors. This is why there are also less dense mostly residential portions of any city and burbs. The trade off again is without the car you are limited to staying in said high density area because you can't access jobs, resources or other things in lower density areas because as density drop so does the availability of public transit.
Perhaps inherent was the wrong word. I think what I was trying to say is that cars are not NECESSARILY more convenient than transit. It seems like we even agree that there are some situations for simple given certain environmental factors where cars are not the most convenient.
 
Old 07-26-2014, 06:59 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stateofnature View Post
Perhaps inherent was the wrong word. I think what I was trying to say is that cars are not NECESSARILY more convenient than transit. It seems like we even agree that there are some situations for simple given certain environmental factors where cars are not the most convenient.
In general cars are more convenient than transit. However the environmental factors where an automobile would be less than ideal were around before the invention of the auto or before people totally understood what new requirements the automobile would put on society. The area wasn't designed to be car hostile it just was less than ideal.

An good example was an School I attended. It was old and lacked an parking lot, which wasn't an problem because the nuns built an convenient as part of the building. Their work commute would have been walk to another part of the building for class. However in the modern world it caused all the teachers and student and visiting parents to park on the street! (The nuns had departed).

Now fortunately(or unfortunately) the area around it was very blighted and there were no residents near by who also needed to park but you can imagine the mess. While it is possible to take public transit to this location, it isn't an safe area to hang around nor could you expect that public transit be available for the full route(i.e. Some of the teachers lived in the burbs and even if public transit was available it would have likely been slower than driving esp. if you are an teacher and need to be to work at 8:00a.m.....that just imposes potential hardship on an lot of people.)

Last edited by chirack; 07-26-2014 at 07:26 PM..
 
Old 07-26-2014, 07:40 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
What's being built for cars above all else?
For clarity's sake, I was responding to the idea that cars were fundamentally, naturally the best option, as was implied by Chirack:

Quote:
Originally Posted by chirack View Post
Public transit is useful and great and an wonderful idea but it is also limited and limiting and thus public policy favors the automobile.
What's being built for cars above all else? Examples? Freeways don't facilitate easy on-off access for buses. And lots of intersections put the car above all else, with long greens timed for fast traffic, car-favoring right turns, and so on. Also, most stand-alone fast food restaurants are largely hostile to pedestrians, as are many, if not most, strip malls and big box stores.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
And don't people drive the cars?
I believe we've touched on this argument before.

I think the disconnect is that you believe that an area that moves cars efficiently serves the needs of the people-as-drivers, whereas I believe that it is important to differentiate between the needs of the driver--lots of parking everywhere, lots of lanes, long greens, few intersections--and the needs of the person-non-driver--wide sidewalks, distance from high-speed traffic, shade, obvious and straight-ish walking paths between places/destination, lots of street crossings, short waits at intersections, etc.

In other words, in another context, it used to be said what was good for GM was good for America. So, how I read you is "what is good for the driver is good for people." As I've noted, I disagree.
 
Old 07-26-2014, 08:31 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 22 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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^^We've touched on this entire conversation before, just with some different players.

"Freeways don't facilitate easy on-off access for buses. And lots of intersections put the car above all else, with long greens timed for fast traffic, car-favoring right turns, and so on. Also, most stand-alone fast food restaurants are largely hostile to pedestrians, as are many, if not most, strip malls and big box stores."
Speaking of stuff we've touched on before! I don't know that freeways don't facilitate easy on-off access for buses. Most intersections I traverse seem to have lights favoring the most heavily traveled roads, not the fastest traffic. I'd say something snarky about fast food, but nei would get on my case, so I'll just say, yes, most of the chain hamburger stands don't favor walking, though "hostile" is not quite the word I'd use. This strip mall issue cracks me up! Throughout metro Denver, most strip malls are located on roads with sidewalks, to facilitate walking to them. The b*tch some people have is with curb cuts, as if people are going in and out of these strip malls at 60 mph, when in fact one slows down to enter, and isn't going very fast in the first place when leaving. These tend to be the same people who want kids playing hopscotch and what-have-you in the public roadways with cars driving at faster speeds than they do in strip malls.

You misunderstand me when you say that I think "what is good for the driver is good for people." No. Not at all, though drivers are people. But I am saying that no place is built to suit the needs of cars. Cars are not sentient beings. Some places are built to suit the needs of drivers, but drivers are human beings. They also vote, and make planning decisions.

Last edited by Katarina Witt; 07-26-2014 at 08:48 PM..
 
Old 07-26-2014, 09:40 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
45,990 posts, read 41,998,698 times
Reputation: 14810
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
The some people have is with curb cuts, as if people are going in and out of these strip malls at 60 mph, when in fact one slows down to enter, and isn't going very fast in the first place when leaving.
That's not my main objection, at least. Don't feel like going into them in detail again but I have described them before.

Quote:
These tend to be the same people who want kids playing hopscotch and what-have-you in the public roadways with cars driving at faster speeds than they do in strip malls.
Generally, the kids playing on residential streets discussion is on streets where car traffic is going at roughly strip mall speed or slowed to that speed or less (see for example, the traffic calming on the woonerf thread)
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