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Old 02-08-2015, 11:00 AM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,043 posts, read 102,742,261 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by impala096 View Post
^It's blatantly obvious, even to a casual observer, that a select few cities are the focus of the urban planning forum.
We focus on the cities where we live, or lived, or in some cases, have visited extensively.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spikett View Post
After reading a variety of posts in a variety of threads in this forum, I've noticed that the main participants live in a very few cities - Chicago, NY, Boston, Philly, DC, and so forth. IOW, eastern or midwestern large cities with a true urban core and decent public transportation. The rest of the country, for the most part, seems to be ignored despite the fact that a lot of folks live in the rest of the country (the flyover states and the west). The predominant attitude seems to be one of superiority that shuns "the rest of us" - generally speaking - and the living situations/conditions we face. It very clique-ish.

I live in Burbank and work in west Los Angeles near Santa Monica. I drive to and from work. I drive pretty much everywhere. I have a compact car and get great gas mileage. My commute can be pretty bad but I go in later in the morning which helps. I love living in the suburbs and my job (which I also love) is in a very congested part of the city where I have no desire to live. The commute is worth it to me. Public transportation would take twice as long as doing it by car. I'm also older and have some health issues that would make public transport pretty challenging.

I'm from Nashville, TN. Another city where you need a car. Public transport is very limited and is a spoke system where all buses go downtown. Most cities are like this. There are also more and more suburban office and business centers that are not on public transportation. But none of these things are really brought up - it's just a ongoing conversation (competition) about the trains in Philly, Chicago, etc... between the same basic folks who don't seem to take kindly to any challenge. There's an expression for this that involves circles and jerking but I won't use it in polite company. Just my observation.
There are a lot of California cities mentioned here, also Denver. There are a couple of us Denveries that post here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
I doubt it would make a difference to eschaton, as eschaton (as well as myself) have a different definition of suburb than you do. I believe you that Beaver Falls is inter-connected to Pittsburgh, but I didn't think that necessarily made it a suburb of Pittsburgh. I'm not sure I'd call the mill areas north of Springfield, MA suburbs of Springfield, just separate towns even though they economic ties they all economic ties, Springfield is just bigger. One of the nearby ones (Chicopee) was part of Springfield until the mid 1800s when it seceded from Springfield. It doesn't seem like the locals refer to these places as Springfield suburbs, as far I can tell.

Yes, we've had this discussion on "what's the definition of a suburb" before. I don't think either of us is interested in repeating

Correct!

Unless the surrounding of the big city was uninhabited, there's usually something that there before it become a suburb of a big city. Sometimes most of the town was built up before suburbanization, other times the old part is tiny.

A lot of the area around Denver was open land in the recent past.

I don't get why you're so interested in bringing up stuff from old threads, why do they matter much? Or are at all interesting? Especially since the ones you're mentioning are just over generalizations, why would anyone want to hear more of those? But yes, definitely thanks for not re-quoting those.

It was meant to be a joke. I'm not crazy. If a mod doesn't like something, you're better off not to post it.

Also, I wasn't specifically referring to transit in suburbs. I was thinking more of places where transit gets more than negligible use, wherever that may be. Linda_d didn't just say no transit in the evening but none midday. Other than some commuter buses and a few commuter rail lines, that's not a common situation except maybe in tiny bus systems.

There are places with little to no mid-day transit. Lots of "suburb to city" transit is like that.

The bus system here is region-wide. However, buses mostly go no more than the next town over, you still have to transfer to the next bus, even though it's the same system. Some lines do shut down after 7 PM or so, others don't.
(Colors mine)

Ours is region-wide now. I'm referring to when I was a kid. There was one bus line that serviced the Beaver Falls/New Brighton area, and a separate bus line that didn't integrate at all with the BF/NB line that served the southerly parts of the Beaver Valley. There was another line that serviced some of the BF suburbs. Nowadays, there's a Beaver County transit agency there. Oddly, fewer people had cars back when I was a kid and more HAD to ride buses as their only source of transportation, e.g my mom during the day, but it was harder to do with more waiting, no "free" transfers, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
My mother [when younger] always told me to wash my hands after touching the poles on the subway. Didn't listen.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda_d View Post
That's because you live in a dense urban area with lots of traffic. The entire US is not like that. It takes me between 10 and 15 minutes to drive the 3.5 miles from my house to my job across town during morning and afternoon commute times. It will sometimes take a little longer if it's snowy.
True dat. It takes me 12 minutes to drive the 4 1/2 miles from house to job. Sometimes I can do it in 10, especially coming home because I can turn right on red at a place where I have to wait for a left turn signal going in.
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Old 02-08-2015, 11:07 AM
 
410 posts, read 390,446 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FallsAngel View Post
True dat. It takes me 12 minutes to drive the 4 1/2 miles from house to job. Sometimes I can do it in 10, especially coming home because I can turn right on red at a place where I have to wait for a left turn signal going in.
You can travel nearly a minute per mile on surface streets in Metro Detroit. Cruising 60 mph down Woodward or Telegraph isn't uncommon (and the lights are timed well)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wkf7iLSblZ0
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Old 02-08-2015, 11:09 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 42,070,148 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by impala096 View Post
The correlation could be made that cities with low transit modal shares aren't discussed as often as cities with high transit modal shares on this forum. Why is that though? So much of a city's transportation network is reliant on roads and highways. Focusing so much attention on transit and so little on roads/highways doesn't jive with reality. Maybe the argument being made by some on here is that urban planners are out of touch with reality?
Personally, it's because I don't find those places interesting or appealing. The same applies to many other posters. People post here for fun. Cities that are completely auto-oriented come across to me as "drive by cities". I like cities where there are people walking on the street, interesting buildings in parts, and you can easily get a sense of the place by walking around rather than just driving parking lot to driveway and back. I started posting on urban planning because I'm enthusiastic about cities or rather a certain type of them. Let's talk about them! Instead this forum gets an endless urban vs suburbia argument. Or if you're interested in some place, start new threads on your interest.

Also why focus on just the United States? Since the forum is: let's talk about a city's layout, I see no reason why I should be more interested in Oklohama City rather than a European city of 1 million.

In professional urban planning, I do think there is an extra attention on transit and pedestrians, though state transportation departments often have the opposite. The professional urban planners that do are often in cities that already or can be changed to be more pedestrian oriented.
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Old 02-08-2015, 11:10 AM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,043 posts, read 102,742,261 times
Reputation: 33089
nei, since you "dredged up" this old post, I'm here to tell you there's an error in the chart. Omaha is not >1mil, it's about 800,000, part of which is in Iowa.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
The thershold is metros over 1 million. There are lots of them that haven't been discussed but should be more than say, Atlanta, Los Angeles or Miami.



List of Metropolitan Statistical Areas - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

How about Oklahoma City? Indianapolis? Raleigh, NC [not sure]? Birmingham, Alabama? Jacksonville, Florida? All of these are all low density and rather decentralized, and the south in general tends to have lower public transit usage than other parts of the country. Oklahoma City has about half the bus service of a usual "newer" American metro (note rail is excluded, except many cities in the graph either no rail or very little):



State Transit Systems Offer Sparse Service, But Ridership Is Growing | Oklahoma Watch

From the link, annual ridership is 8 million riders / year. Nassau County, NY has 29 million annual riders for its county bus system with a similar population. Salt Lake City, a slightly smaller metropiltan area, has 44 million riders bus and rail (not a fair comparison with Nassau County as Nassau has the LIRR). Las Vegas has 60 million riders / year, with a BRT system, though a population of 2 million rather than Oklahama City's 1.3 million. There is no reason why Las Vegas belongs on this discussion. From what I've read, its coverage is good but the speed can be very slow. At the higher end, Honolulu's bus system has 74 million bus riders / year, with only about 800,000 people in the region.

Indianopolis is worse from a per capita point of view: 10 million annual riders with a metro population of 1.9 million. Some old centralized cities (such as Buffalo) might have low transit ridership overall but good service in the central parts where transit is the most useful, so those cities shouldn't be among the worst. In any case, metro-wide, Buffalo has about half the transit ridership of Salt Lake City with the same population, but far better than Oklahoma City and Indianapolis.
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Old 02-08-2015, 11:11 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,580,362 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by impala096 View Post
You can travel nearly a minute per mile on surface streets in Metro Detroit. Cruising 60 mph down Woodward or Telegraph isn't uncommon (and the lights are timed well)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wkf7iLSblZ0
That is because those two streets are basically timer to be highways not local streets. Even still, traveling 3 miles in a minute seems like an exaggeration.
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Old 02-08-2015, 11:16 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
45,992 posts, read 42,070,148 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by impala096 View Post
You can travel nearly a minute per mile on surface streets in Metro Detroit. Cruising 60 mph down Woodward or Telegraph isn't uncommon (and the lights are timed well)
I don't think there's anywhere in Massachusetts you can do that. Well maybe a few arterial roads, and maybe a few rural roads.
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Old 02-08-2015, 11:45 AM
 
410 posts, read 390,446 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
That is because those two streets are basically timer to be highways not local streets. Even still, traveling 3 miles in a minute seems like an exaggeration.
Three miles in a minute is NASCAR speeds! You can travel roughly a minute per mile on select routes in metro Detroit. Did somebody else claim they could travel 3 miles in a minute? That's insane.

Most people assume that the big wide boulevards of the Motor City were built to cater to the automobile. The reality is much different. The transportation system of Detroit was originally centered around transit. The city had plans to construct rapid transit lines running underneath the major thoroughfares of the city and the Detroit Rapid Transit Commission (back in the 20's) concluded that 120 feet is the minimum street width that should be considered for a 4-track rapid transit line. Outside of the city limits, the ROW was expanded to 204 with 86 feet dedicated for surface rail lines. The wide streets of Detroit and the wide boulevards of the suburbs are a direct result of the region's vision to have a world class transit system. It just never materialized.
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Old 02-08-2015, 11:57 AM
 
9,701 posts, read 7,273,942 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by impala096 View Post
Fair enough. Boston MSA is 3.5x the population of OKC MSA. It would be reasonable to expect Boston to be discussed 3.5x more often then. The reality is, Boston is discussed 36x more than Oklahoma City (987 posts vs. 27 posts). I'm really stating the obvious, but some cities get more attention than others on this forum. Why anybody would get defensive to that fact is beyond me.
Oklahoma City is like not even 1% the city of Boston. There are 8 million people in the Boston CSA, and the city is like 1000x more urban and interesting from an urbanist perspective. Oklahoma City is just not interesting for anything in terms of urbanity/transit.

There isn't even a single neighborhood in OKC that is remotely notable from an urban or transit perspective. Even an Albany or Hartford or Wilmington is much more interesting.

You might as well compare Oklahoma City to Paris, Tokyo and NYC while you're at it.

But if you personally want to promote or discuss OKC, you're welcome to start threads dealing with the city.
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Old 02-08-2015, 12:03 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 NOLA101 View Post
Oklahoma City is like not even 1% the city of Boston. There are 8 million people in the Boston CSA, and the city is like 1000x more urban and interesting from an urbanist perspective. Oklahoma City is just not interesting for anything in terms of urbanity/transit.
Except impala doesn't care about more transit and probably not urbanity. I think he was asking why we should value that. I'm not sure if that's an answerable question; it's just a value judgement.

I do think MSA is a better measure than CSA, especially for places like New England, which have lots of old cities and towns near each other. As for 1% the city, whether true or not, that tends to annoy some, as it gives off a "my city is superior to yours" vibe.
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Old 02-08-2015, 12:07 PM
 
9,701 posts, read 7,273,942 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
EAs for 1% the city, whether true or not, that tends to annoy some, as it gives off a "my city is superior to yours" vibe.
I'm not claiming Boston is superior; that's a totally subjective claim (and Boston is actually not one of my favorite cities), but in terms of an urban planning forum, OKC just isn't relevant, IMO. It's 99% typical American sprawl.

I don't see what's worth discussing, unless one has a personal interest in OKC. We're talking the same tract homes and strip malls one sees to some degree from coast to coast.
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