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Old 08-02-2016, 07:07 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis, MN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bawac34618 View Post
But it looks nearly identical to Sherman or Denton or Waco or Amarillo, or even suburban places in the metroplex like Arlington.

Identical to Denton? How? Denton doesn't even have a proper skyline, OKC does. I mean its similar to Texas cities but no sh*t Sherlock, it's in the same region. It's hardly identical.
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Old 08-02-2016, 09:00 PM
 
Location: Okinawa, Japan
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I think the people here need a more of an international perspective of how other places build their cities. Comparing different American Cities after awhile doesn't really give one an idea how things could work.

After living in Asia there is a few things that are definitely noticeable. In places like Japan things are fairly developed and compact for space reasons. Most of the land is mountainous and Japanese people dont' just move away like Americans do when they think an area is "undesirable" or vice versa. There aren't as many zoning regulations as you might think, meaning in some places you might have a bar with apartments on top of that building next to a junkyard. And these buildings vary in how they look quite a bit as well. The restaurants may have really cheap chairs like what you see at a wal mart but that also keeps costs down. You don't need a half million dollar franchisee license or a liquor license to start a business, opening the path to entrepreneurship for more people than in America. That happens ALOT and in many cases is what makes Asia unique. Interestingly enough it also creates its own type of landscape with narrow roads, convenient stores with a sugarcane field next door next to a tire shop.

In America people complain about petty NIMBY issues to the point where everybody ends up living in sprawling suburban areas to the point of nausea. It also drives up the cost of living way too much. That means many places look exactly like the other to make the people happy. I hate saying it but Americans keep up with the Jones way too much and this is reflected in how their cities are formed. Probably a result of 50 years of middle class decadence.
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Old 08-02-2016, 10:34 PM
 
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Just wait till TPTB get through with fully implementing Agenda 21. I suspect American cities will more and more resemble each other over time, even if their original development history was quite different.


I had to laugh though that someone might stretch to compare the view across what I call 'high hat' McMansions in Denton (which may have an official 'city' designation but compared to NYC, it is a village), or Fort Worth or Detroit even, with the skylines of (again) Manhattan for instance. I (currently) see little similarity at all.


But, if the OP meant just that ...in general ... people do live in cities, and that the smaller the square mileage a city can occupy (because of terrain or perhaps pre-defined political boundaries) the higher the buildings tend to climb if the city is one where, for whatever reason, people see opportunity and are willing to be crammed into smaller and smaller, more and more expensive, housing .. ok .. but I am not sure it warrants much discussion.
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Old 08-02-2016, 10:46 PM
 
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Modernism values function over form. Beauty doesn't provide any immediate financial return, doesn't serve a practical purpose from a business point of view so buildings are constructed as cheaply as possible, as long as it meets the safety codes that's where it ends. So cities end up looking bland, cold and corporate. I think the term for it is dystopian. Traditional craftsmanship is a lost art.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gladhands View Post
You know you could do this for Asian cities too? Honestly, a lot of European cities look alike too.

That isn't necessarily a bad thing. Two beautiful things that look alike isn't the same as two ugly things that look alike.
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Old 08-02-2016, 11:19 PM
Status: "Happy New Year!" (set 1 hour ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike2050 View Post
Just a bunch of concrete sky scrapers in the city centre does not make a city for me. Great cities have their individual characteristics that develop over time. It's almost like all the cities use the same template.
Ever been to western Europe? Those cities all look the same, too. A city square that is several US blocks each way, totally paved over with no greenery save for a tree or two growing through the bricks; a cathedral; stores, restaurants, yada, yada.
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Old 08-03-2016, 07:45 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
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Go back to say 1900 and there were very particular building styles over portions of the country. New England had wood-framed detached houses (and triple-deckers), the Mid-Atlantic had brick rowhouses placed close to the street, and the south had mostly wooden houses with large porches, along with shotgun housing for the poor. This is why older neighborhoods in different parts of the country can look so startlingly different, and give off a strong "sense of place."

This began to change during the streetcar suburban period, where housing styles like the bungalow and American foursquare became popular. Even then, there were often local variances to the styles. For example, New England foursquares continued to be made out of wood, while Mid-Atlantic ones were more likely brick. The choice to have the roof tiled or covered in slate varied depending upon area as well.

At the present, there are few differences in housing styles any longer. Most of the regional differences you do see are not because vernaculars are different, but because of the necessities of construction. For example, new build houses in areas with poor soil are less likely to have basements. Or areas (like the south) where labor costs are cheaper are more likely to have full brick cladding. But for the most part America now has only two definable housing styles - a "fake Spanish" stucco style used in Florida, Southern California, and parts of the Southwest, and a "Generic American" style used everywhere else.

If you're talking about larger structures - things like modern apartment buildings or commercial office towers - there is even less regional variance. These are all architect designed, and architecture has been a national movement for over a century now. That said, I don't even think the modern designs in the U.S. and Europe are all that different, save for the practical limitations that U.S. zoning puts on construction (like parking requirements).
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Old 08-03-2016, 07:58 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katarina Witt View Post
Ever been to western Europe? Those cities all look the same, too. A city square that is several US blocks each way, totally paved over with no greenery save for a tree or two growing through the bricks; a cathedral; stores, restaurants, yada, yada.
I don't really think that European urban cores look all that similar across the entire continent, with the exception of tight street walls. The historic building vernaculars when you compare somewhere like Copenhagen to Barcelona are quite different. Northern European cities also tend to have wider roads (while still narrow by American standards). The biggest difference is that outside of the UK, once you get outside of the urban core there are plenty of suburban-looking neighborhoods. This is only a 20-minute drive out of the core of Copenhagen, for example.
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Old 08-03-2016, 08:38 AM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: NYC
46,042 posts, read 43,299,323 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katarina Witt View Post
Ever been to western Europe? Those cities all look the same, too. A city square that is several US blocks each way, totally paved over with no greenery save for a tree or two growing through the bricks; a cathedral; stores, restaurants, yada, yada.
There are big difference in styles between regions of Europe. Even with countries. Besides eschaton, there's a conversation some years back mentioning differences between northern vs southern France.
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Old 08-03-2016, 09:06 AM
 
Location: Cleveland, OH
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They don't.
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Old 08-03-2016, 09:15 AM
Status: "Happy New Year!" (set 1 hour ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
88,545 posts, read 104,871,472 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
There are big difference in styles between regions of Europe. Even with countries. Besides eschaton, there's a conversation some years back mentioning differences between northern vs southern France.
I saw what I saw in western Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium. The big difference in the Netherlands was the canals. No, they weren't carbon copies of each other, but all were built on the same principals (principles?), brick it up!
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