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Old 05-01-2020, 05:36 AM
 
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Canada is very homogenous.
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Old 05-01-2020, 12:03 PM
 
Location: Chicago, Illinois
59 posts, read 15,238 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manitopiaaa View Post
Take Japan. While Japan offers a lot for tourists, its cities tend to be extremely homogenous in built form. Osaka, Tokyo, Fukuoka, Sapporo, Nagoya, etc. all look visually similar. Even Kyoto, the most unique of Japan's cities, is largely homogenous in its majority residential areas.

Now think of the U.S. A city like Boston will never be visually mistaken for a Miami or a Chicago or a San Francisco or a Las Vegas. In fact, the U.S.'s major cities have extreme architectural and visual diversity.

Atlanta, Dallas, Houston have a similar modernist Sunbelt sprawl look.
Boston and Philadelphia are colonial
New York is unique for its extreme density and its vast swathe of 20th century gems.
Washington is neo-classical
Chicago is architecturally avant-garde with a blend of quirky modernism and some pre-war gems.
Las Vegas is vast sprawl with a bright neon corridor.
San Francisco's hills and Queen Anne architecture are unmistakable
Miami's Art Deco and tropical look are unique in America
New Orleans's French Quarter and Caribbean look are unique
Then there are smaller cities: Honolulu, Santa Fe, Savannah, Charleston, etc.

The U.S. has a varied urban typology. Nobody should ever mistake Miami for San Francisco, New York for Washington, Las Vegas for Boston, Philadelphia for Seattle or San Antonio for Chicago.

What countries have a diverse urban pairing beyond the U.S.?

For some major countries, my thoughts:
Australia: Homogenous
Brazil: Homogenous
Canada: Homogenous
China: Moderate diversity
France: Moderate diversity
Germany: Homogenous
India: High diversity
Italy: High diversity
Israel: High diversity
Japan: Homogenous
Mexico: Homogenous
Russia: Homogenous
South Korea: Homogenous
Spain: High diversity
Turkey: Moderate diversity
United Kingdom: Homogenous
Vietnam: Moderate diversity

Homogenous: Most major cities in the country look extremely similar. Telling one city apart from another is difficult.

Per capita, a country like Slovenia would do very well. It has mountain towns, baroque towns, Mediterranean towns with orange roofs, industrial towns. Lots of diversity for its size.

The same for Belgium.

Of course, Spain is to me the European winner: Gaudist Barcelona, Gothic Santiago de Compostela, modernist Bilbao, beaux arts Madrid, Roman Merida, Moorish Granada, imperial Seville, etc. Lots of diversity.

So what country has the most unique urban architectural pairings to you?
I see what you're saying, but the countries you label homogeneous and heterogeneous aren't quite accurate, IMO.

For example, even if just for the natural elements, there are clear visual and aesthetic differences between Sao Paulo and Rio De Janeiro. And Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver all look somewhat different from each other, add in Quebec City, Halifax, and Calgary for good measure. These cities have notably different built environments.

I'd say Australia is pretty homogeneous, though Melbourne presents a slight wrinkle.

I think the UK is actually more homogeneous than Canada. It has depth of architectural history, for sure, at least in areas, but I've never felt the UK really exceeded many American cities in architectural splendor, though it has it's gorgeous exceptions - parts of London are beautiful, and Edinburgh is gorgeous. Bath is cute. I'll go down the list and give my opinions, with a 1 (most homogeneous) to 5 (most diverse) ranking.


For some major countries, my thoughts:

Australia: I'd agree that Australia is architecturally/developmentally homogeneous, for the most part. It gets a 1 from me | 1

Brazil: I'd give Brazil a 2, just because I think the difference between Sao Paulo and Rio is too huge to ignore | 2

Canada: I'd give Canada a 3. It's actually somewhat architecturally diverse, between Ottawa, Quebec City, Halifax, Montreal, Calgary, Toronto, and dense but glassy and basic Vancouver. Niagara Falls is even somewhat distinct, if not quite as extravagant and scenic as Las Vegas | 3

China: I don't consider China to be that diverse. It's cities are full of crappy modern development that all looks the same. Tower blocks. Bleh | 2

France: I'd day it has moderate diversity as well. There's nice differences between the Mediterranean developed south, the northern metropolis of Paris, and the eastern, more German-influenced territory. I'd say it isn't actually as diverse as Canada or the US is, just because the massive differences in climate, environment, and development aren't as stark. France has a depth of very pretty architecture, don't get me wrong, but it's pretty same-y. There's no massive shift from gleaming, post-modern city-scape to small colonial town in France like there is in many of the countries it colonized, everything is generally built low, in a similar architectural style | 3

Germany: I'd say Germany is pretty homogeneous, even in it's historic areas. It's remarkable how little architectural diversity there is given it's size and position relative to the European continent. IMO, German cities can be horribly ugly in areas | 2

India: High diversity. I'd agree. Even internally, inside cities, the eclecticism of design in India is just astounding | 5

Italy: I'd say it's fairly diverse, though not quite as diverse as India. Italy lacks a truly modern metropolis, and much of it's cities have similar "Italianate" architecture. Italy has some of the most charming built environments in the world, and a wonderful depth of architectural history, though | 4

Israel: Low diversity. Can't believe you thought it was high? It has some ancient architectural elements in areas, but Israel looks much the same, city to city, with modern development consisting of residential towers all over the place. It's pretty homogeneous | 2

Japan: Homogenous. I would agree. It has some inaccessible and astounding small towns, but it's cities are all modern development | 1

Mexico: I wouldn't call Mexico homogeneous. It's not the most diverse country on earth, architecturally speaking, but the geography of the country makes it pretty hard to say that it's not developmentally diverse, though it's pretty run down and basic in the residential areas | 3

Russia: I'd say Russia is pretty homogeneous. Russia has buildings that are architecturally stunning, but Russian cities, as a collective, are actually very same-y and boring | 2

South Korea: Homogenous. Definitely. Totally fine-looking and fun. But homogeneous | 1

Spain: Not quite high diversity, but up there, similar to France. It has a few cities that almost entirely approach modernism, and a number of nice smaller cities. Barcelona and Madrid have distinct, quirky architectural styles | 4

Turkey: Similar to France. It has some nice, historic cities, the Grand Bazaar and the Blue Mosque are cool, but it's just not very dynamic city to city, even though it has buildings that are gems by themselves | 2

United Kingdom: Homogenous. I'd actually agree that the UK is pretty homogeneous. I wouldn't say a 1, because of Edinburgh, and parts of Bath, but a 2. It does have some architectural dynamism, from Milton Keynes, this sort of sprawling, suburban-esque city, to London, a metropolitan hub with both gleaming modernism and old, palatial architecture, and then to places like Blackpool and Brighton, these sort of quirky seaside towns...but it's just sort of same-y overall, even when it's architectural history is considered | 2

United States: I'd say the U.S. performs fairly well on developmental and architectural diversity. It has a variety of old colonial styles, from British to Dutch to French to Spanish to Russian. You have cities in a variety of different geographic environments and climates. You have colorful coastal cities like Charleston, Caribbean/Creole cities like New Orleans, interesting Baptist/culturally southern cities like Galveston and Mobile, large gleaming metropolises that mix modernism and history, like Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, and Baltimore, you have a diversity in modernist cities, like the notable differences between the built environments between Portland, Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, and Seattle, Honolulu and Anchorage being sheer opposites, Las Vegas and it's strip, gleaming Miami and it's beach, twinned with distant, Caribbean Key West and its shacks. Chicago is the birthplace of so many quirky high rises and architectural ideas in sky-scraper form, and it's architectural avant-garde style is mirrored in Midwestern cities like Detroit, Milwaukee, and St. Louis. You have cities like Nashville and Memphis, which have old-style "main streets" as central hubs, Salt Lake City, this gleaming city with unique churches and religious monuments amidst the mountains, Colorado mountain towns, places like Jackson Hole, with their old-west shop facades, San Francisco with it's hilly landscape and it's unique residential architecture, San Diego and it's presidios and modernism, San Antonio and it's river walk, twinned with some older Spanish colonial architecture, Hot Springs, Arkansas, this sort of unheard of spa city tucked into lush mountains, which bears a striking similarity to Asheville, this small North Carolina city tucked into the Blue Ridge mountains, nearby this old, Chateaux-esque, gilded age mansion, you've got Los Angeles with it's mid-century modern design, Albuquerque and Santa Fe, with their incorporation of ancient Adobe styles and Spanish colonial, many smaller California cities and towns are entirely Mediterranean in construction, there are cities built to withstand the desert, with brown tones, kitschy architecture, and gardens clashing with the dust, cities like Hilo and Jupiter, Florida, amidst tropical rainforest and savanna. Plains vernacular architecture, and the cattle-town feel of smaller Great Plains cities like Omaha, Wichita, or even Deadwood, and DC and it's neo-classical, monumental architecture, and it's low relief buildings and wide boulevards. I wouldn't say the US is the MOST architecturally diverse, as it has modernist cities that can seem somewhat same-y, but, architecturally and developmentally, it's still very diverse | 4.

Here's my ranking, consolidated:

5 (Most Diverse): India
4: Italy, Spain, United States
3: Canada, France, Mexico
2: Brazil, China, Germany, Israel, Russia, Turkey, United Kingdom
1 (Least Diverse): Australia, Japan, South Korea

Last edited by wattsupmane; 05-01-2020 at 12:20 PM..
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Old 05-01-2020, 12:07 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
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Originally Posted by usuariodeldia View Post
Canada is very homogenous.
Canada won't win this, but the look of its cities is definitely not homogenous.
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Old 05-01-2020, 12:27 PM
 
573 posts, read 275,217 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wattsupmane View Post
I see what you're saying, but the countries you label homogeneous and heterogeneous aren't quite accurate, IMO.

For example, even if just for the natural elements, there are clear visual and aesthetic differences between Sao Paulo and Rio De Janeiro. And Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver all look somewhat different from each other, add in Quebec City, Halifax, and Calgary for good measure. These cities have notably different built environments.

I'd say Australia is pretty homogeneous, though Melbourne presents a slight wrinkle.

I think the UK is actually more homogeneous than Canada. It has depth of architectural history, for sure, at least in areas, but I've never felt the UK really exceeded many American cities in architectural splendor, though it has it's gorgeous exceptions - parts of London are beautiful, and Edinburgh is gorgeous. Bath is cute. I'll go down the list and give my opinions, with a 1 (most homogeneous) to 5 (most diverse) ranking.


For some major countries, my thoughts:

Australia: I'd agree that Australia is architecturally/developmentally homogeneous, for the most part. It gets a 1 from me | 1

Brazil: I'd give Brazil a 2, just because I think the difference between Sao Paulo and Rio is too huge to ignore | 2

Canada: I'd give Canada a 3. It's actually somewhat architecturally diverse, between Ottawa, Quebec City, Halifax, Montreal, Calgary, Toronto, and dense but glassy and basic Vancouver. Niagara Falls is even somewhat distinct, if not quite as extravagant and scenic as Las Vegas | 3

China: I don't consider China to be that diverse. It's cities are full of crappy modern development that all looks the same. Tower blocks. Bleh | 2

France: I'd day it has moderate diversity as well. There's nice differences between the Mediterranean developed south, the northern metropolis of Paris, and the eastern, more German-influenced territory. I'd say it isn't actually as diverse as Canada or the US is, just because the massive differences in climate, environment, and development aren't as stark. France has a depth of very pretty architecture, don't get me wrong, but it's pretty same-y. There's no massive shift from gleaming, post-modern city-scape to small colonial town in France like there is in many of the countries it colonized, everything is generally built low, in a similar architectural style | 3

Germany: I'd say Germany is pretty homogeneous, even in it's historic areas. It's remarkable how little architectural diversity there is given it's size and position relative to the European continent. IMO, German cities can be horribly ugly in areas | 2

India: High diversity. I'd agree. Even internally, inside cities, the eclecticism of design in India is just astounding | 5

Italy: I'd say it's fairly diverse, though not quite as diverse as India. Italy lacks a truly modern metropolis, and much of it's cities have similar "Italianate" architecture. Italy has some of the most charming built environments in the world, and a wonderful depth of architectural history, though | 4

Israel: Low diversity. Can't believe you thought it was high? It has some ancient architectural elements in areas, but Israel looks much the same, city to city, with modern development consisting of residential towers all over the place. It's pretty homogeneous | 2

Japan: Homogenous. I would agree. It has some inaccessible and astounding small towns, but it's cities are all modern development | 1

Mexico: I wouldn't call Mexico homogeneous. It's not the most diverse country on earth, architecturally speaking, but the geography of the country makes it pretty hard to say that it's not developmentally diverse, though it's pretty run down and basic in the residential areas | 3

Russia: I'd say Russia is pretty homogeneous. Russia has buildings that are architecturally stunning, but Russian cities, as a collective, are actually very same-y and boring | 2

South Korea: Homogenous. Definitely. Totally fine-looking and fun. But homogeneous | 1

Spain: Not quite high diversity, but up there, similar to France. It has a few cities that almost entirely approach modernism, and a number of nice smaller cities. Barcelona and Madrid have distinct, quirky architectural styles | 4

Turkey: Similar to France. It has some nice, historic cities, the Grand Bazaar and the Blue Mosque are cool, but it's just not very dynamic city to city, even though it has buildings that are gems by themselves | 2

United Kingdom: Homogenous. I'd actually agree that the UK is pretty homogeneous. I wouldn't say a 1, because of Edinburgh, and parts of Bath, but a 2. It does have some architectural dynamism, from Milton Keynes, this sort of sprawling, suburban-esque city, to London, a metropolitan hub with both gleaming modernism and old, palatial architecture, and then to places like Blackpool and Brighton, these sort of quirky seaside towns...but it's just sort of same-y overall, even when it's architectural history is considered | 2

United States: I'd say the U.S. performs fairly well on developmental and architectural diversity. It has a variety of old colonial styles, from British to Dutch to French to Spanish to Russian. You have cities in a variety of different geographic environments and climates. You have colorful coastal cities like Charleston, Caribbean/Creole cities like New Orleans, interesting Baptist/culturally southern cities like Galveston and Mobile, large gleaming metropolises that mix modernism and history, like Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, and Baltimore, you have a diversity in modernist cities, like the notable differences between the built environments between Portland, Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, and Seattle, Honolulu and Anchorage being sheer opposites, Las Vegas and it's strip, gleaming Miami and it's beach, twinned with distant, Caribbean Key West and its shacks. Chicago is the birthplace of so many quirky high rises and architectural ideas in sky-scraper form, and it's architectural avant-garde style is mirrored in Midwestern cities like Detroit, Milwaukee, and St. Louis. You have cities like Nashville and Memphis, which have old-style "main streets" as central hubs, Salt Lake City, this gleaming city with unique churches and religious monuments amidst the mountains, Colorado mountain towns, places like Jackson Hole, with their old-west shop facades, San Francisco with it's hilly landscape and it's unique residential architecture, San Diego and it's presidios and modernism, San Antonio and it's river walk, twinned with some older Spanish colonial architecture, Hot Springs, Arkansas, this sort of unheard of spa city tucked into lush mountains, which bears a striking similarity to Asheville, this small North Carolina city tucked into the Blue Ridge mountains, nearby this old, Chateaux-esque, gilded age mansion, you've got Los Angeles with it's mid-century modern design, Albuquerque and Santa Fe, with their incorporation of ancient Adobe styles and Spanish colonial, many smaller California cities and towns are entirely Mediterranean in construction, there are cities built to withstand the desert, with brown tones, kitschy architecture, and gardens clashing with the dust, Plains vernacular architecture, and the cattle-town feel of smaller Great Plains cities like Omaha, Wichita, or even Deadwood, and DC and it's neo-classical, monumental architecture, and it's low relief buildings and wide boulevards. I wouldn't say the US is the MOST architecturally diverse, as it has modernist cities that can seem somewhat same-y, but, architecturally and developmentally, it's still very diverse | 4.

Here's my ranking, consolidated:

5 (Most Diverse): India
4: Italy, Spain, United States
3: Canada, France, Mexico
2: Brazil, China, Germany, Israel, Russia, Turkey, United Kingdom
1 (Least Diverse): Australia, Japan, South Korea
How can the USA be defined as “diverse”. What a joke! I can easily spot american cities and can’t tell the difference between them. The horrible downtowns, the suburban areas, the obsession with parkings, highways, big chain stores, the ugly asphalt and concrete. USA is one of the least diverse countries (in urban areas). I can’t tell much the difference between NYC, Boston or Chicago. Even NYC looks a lot like Toronto. It’s a huge country with more than 350 million inhabitants. Canada? Same history. Leave the old town of Montreal, Quebec and it’s just a similar city to other canadian ones or a more polished version of an American city, they even have the same yellow school buses.I lived in Montreal in the suburbs (Honoré Beaugrand) and I was shocked how I felt like in the suburbs of Sydney. Similar houses, streets, quietness, etc.

France is very diverse!!!
You have of course Paris, then in the south cities like Marseille, Nice and Montpellier they all look different. Then Toulouse, Biarritz and Bordeaux with a spanish/French mix. You have then the cities close to Germany and Belgium like Lille and Strasbourg with a completely different vibe, people, architecture. And even the overseas territories like Reunion, Tahiti or French Guayana. For instance, Honolulu looks like any American city.
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Old 05-01-2020, 12:30 PM
 
19,265 posts, read 15,970,938 times
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Originally Posted by manitopiaaa View Post
Take Japan. While Japan offers a lot for tourists, its cities tend to be extremely homogenous in built form. Osaka, Tokyo, Fukuoka, Sapporo, Nagoya, etc. all look visually similar. Even Kyoto, the most unique of Japan's cities, is largely homogenous in its majority residential areas.

Now think of the U.S. A city like Boston will never be visually mistaken for a Miami or a Chicago or a San Francisco or a Las Vegas. In fact, the U.S.'s major cities have extreme architectural and visual diversity.

Atlanta, Dallas, Houston have a similar modernist Sunbelt sprawl look.
Boston and Philadelphia are colonial
New York is unique for its extreme density and its vast swathe of 20th century gems.
Washington is neo-classical
Chicago is architecturally avant-garde with a blend of quirky modernism and some pre-war gems.
Las Vegas is vast sprawl with a bright neon corridor.
San Francisco's hills and Queen Anne architecture are unmistakable
Miami's Art Deco and tropical look are unique in America
New Orleans's French Quarter and Caribbean look are unique
Then there are smaller cities: Honolulu, Santa Fe, Savannah, Charleston, etc.

The U.S. has a varied urban typology. Nobody should ever mistake Miami for San Francisco, New York for Washington, Las Vegas for Boston, Philadelphia for Seattle or San Antonio for Chicago.

What countries have a diverse urban pairing beyond the U.S.?

For some major countries, my thoughts:
Australia: Homogenous
Brazil: Homogenous
Canada: Homogenous
China: Moderate diversity
France: Moderate diversity
Germany: Homogenous
India: High diversity
Italy: High diversity
Israel: High diversity
Japan: Homogenous
Mexico: Homogenous
Russia: Homogenous
South Korea: Homogenous
Spain: High diversity
Turkey: Moderate diversity
United Kingdom: Homogenous
Vietnam: Moderate diversity

Homogenous: Most major cities in the country look extremely similar. Telling one city apart from another is difficult.

Per capita, a country like Slovenia would do very well. It has mountain towns, baroque towns, Mediterranean towns with orange roofs, industrial towns. Lots of diversity for its size.

The same for Belgium.

Of course, Spain is to me the European winner: Gaudist Barcelona, Gothic Santiago de Compostela, modernist Bilbao, beaux arts Madrid, Roman Merida, Moorish Granada, imperial Seville, etc. Lots of diversity.

So what country has the most unique urban architectural pairings to you?

"Diverse architectural pairings?"
"U.S.'s major cities have extreme architectural and visual diversity"?

Just LOL.
To you may be.

US have one of THE MOST homogeneous architecture in the world.
Apart from certain landmarks, US cities look amazingly the same.

Diversity - that's all about old European cities: France or Spain in particular.
Germany would have been in the same category, if not for the WWII destruction, where a lot of its ORIGINAL architecture was destroyed.
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Old 05-01-2020, 05:13 PM
 
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Originally Posted by usuariodeldia View Post
How can the USA be defined as “diverse”. What a joke! I can easily spot american cities and can’t tell the difference between them. The horrible downtowns, the suburban areas, the obsession with parkings, highways, big chain stores, the ugly asphalt and concrete. USA is one of the least diverse countries (in urban areas). I can’t tell much the difference between NYC, Boston or Chicago. Even NYC looks a lot like Toronto. It’s a huge country with more than 350 million inhabitants. Canada? Same history. Leave the old town of Montreal, Quebec and it’s just a similar city to other canadian ones or a more polished version of an American city, they even have the same yellow school buses.I lived in Montreal in the suburbs (Honoré Beaugrand) and I was shocked how I felt like in the suburbs of Sydney. Similar houses, streets, quietness, etc.

France is very diverse!!!
You have of course Paris, then in the south cities like Marseille, Nice and Montpellier they all look different. Then Toulouse, Biarritz and Bordeaux with a spanish/French mix. You have then the cities close to Germany and Belgium like Lille and Strasbourg with a completely different vibe, people, architecture. And even the overseas territories like Reunion, Tahiti or French Guayana. For instance, Honolulu looks like any American city.
You sound like an "ugly European".

None of this disputes that America is architecturally diverse. You attack "parking lots" (something every country has), "highways (something that every country has), "big chain stores" (something that every country has), "the ugly asphalt and concrete" (something that every country has). None of this disputes diversity.

You blandly and mean-spiritedly condemn "the horrible downtowns", and then randomly state "the suburban areas"...yeah, every country has "suburban areas" - but America's suburban areas are quaint and have nice, tastefully varied residential architecture, at least, from a number of famous architects, as well - European suburbs don't, they're usually much uglier than American suburbs and residential areas, and usually are dominated by dystopian block housing and drab, attached houses.

NYC doesn't look a lot like Toronto. The buildings are noticeably older and more intricate in New York.

Some of this might be prone to internal biases, I think we can all admit, and I didn't say that France wasn't diverse. I just don't think it's quite as developmentally diverse as other countries on the list, especially not the US, Italy, India, and Spain, because it doesn't have huge aesthetic differences between cities like the US and Spain or Italy does, it doesn't have a diversity in both historic and modern architecture, and it doesn't usually have a mix of the two - I cited the Mediterranean south and the German east as notable...

The US, however is incredibly diverse. It's the birthplace of a lot of modern design movements, and has incarnations of skyscraper design in it's cities that European and Canadian cities tend not to have. It has small cities bearing colonial architecture from a variety of different places, some southwestern locales who's design is entirely built around the harsh natural environment, in mid-century modern aesthetics, or ancient adobe stylings, it has colonial/modern mixed cities, gleaming metropolises, mountain towns designed to look like a Swiss village, California towns and cities that are entirely Mediterranean/Italianate in design, Honolulu has an old royal palace at the center, you have old towns with "main street" facades, spa towns in a mountain range covered in warm temperate/subtropical forests.

I said that one mark against the US is that some of it's modern development is same-y, but that's true for a lot of cities around the world. Attacking the US for highways and commercial elements like big box stores that France has plenty of is just silly. You're quite arrogant.

Quote:
US have one of THE MOST homogeneous architecture in the world.
Apart from certain landmarks, US cities look amazingly the same.
The US by no means has "the most homogenous architecture in the world", considering that it's list of indigenous architectural styles is longer than some European nations...You're just another arrogant Europhile.

France and Spain have a depth of architectural history, sure, as well as a moderate amount of diversity, and some gorgeous built environments, but they don't necessarily have the range of diverse built environments that the US does, which has modernist cities in all sorts of different layouts, featuring all sorts of different building styles, with skyscrapers in bauhaus, gothic, art deco, modern, and art nouveau styles, outlying residential architecture of all types, old colonial cities representing influence from a creole of European nations, notably Spain, the Netherlands, France, and Britain, cities utilizing ancient native American styles, and a range of climate and geography greater than that of any European country, which certainly helps.

Are all of those cities, or parts of those cities absolutely beautiful? No. Are some American (and Canadian) cities downright ugly, and are some of them less attractive than others? Yes. Are there plenty of same-y or similar looking cities across the US? Yes. That doesn't mean the US doesn't have a diverse array of cities, design-wise.

Me and the OP explained why America is developmentally and architecturally diverse, using specific examples, and your knee-jerk Anti-Americanism has you attempting to dispute it by singling out random elements like highways, asphalt, and chain stores, that suburbs and industrial areas of any western country have, in a futile attempt to dispute that American cities have distinct cultural identities - it comes across as extremely arrogant and ignorant. It's always Europeans who act like you who accuse Americans of arrogance or ignorance, it's quite astounding and hypocritical. I've never known Americans to be so mean and dismissive of nearly anywhere, especially not ostensibly friendly western nations.

Last edited by bellatrixwand; 05-01-2020 at 06:09 PM..
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Old 05-01-2020, 06:10 PM
 
19,265 posts, read 15,970,938 times
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Originally Posted by bellatrixwand View Post
You sound like an "ugly European".

None of this disputes that America is architecturally diverse. You attack "parking lots" (something every country has), "highways (something that every country has), "big chain stores" (something that every country has), "the ugly asphalt and concrete" (something that every country has). None of this disputes diversity.

You blandly and mean-spiritedly condemn "the horrible downtowns", and then randomly state "the suburban areas"...yeah, every country has "suburban areas" -
but America's suburban areas are quaint and have nice, tastefully varied residential architecture, at least - European suburbs don't.

NYC doesn't look a lot like Toronto. The buildings are noticeably older and more intricate in New York.

Some of this might be prone to internal biases, I think we can all admit, and I didn't say that France wasn't diverse. I just don't think it's quite as developmentally diverse as other countries on the list, especially not the US, Italy, India, and Spain, because it doesn't have huge aesthetic differences between cities like the US and Spain or Italy does, it doesn't have a diversity in both historic and modern architecture, and it doesn't usually have a mix of the two - I cited the Mediterranean south and the German east as notable...

The US, however is incredibly diverse. It's the birthplace of a lot of modern design movements, and has incarnations of skyscraper design in it's cities that European and Canadian cities tend not to have. It has small cities bearing colonial architecture from a variety of different places, some southwestern locales who's design is entirely built around the harsh natural environment, in mid-century modern aesthetics, or ancient adobe stylings, it has colonial/modern mixed cities, gleaming metropolises, mountain towns designed to look like a Swiss village, Honolulu has an old royal palace at the center, you have old towns with "main street" facades, spa towns in a mountain range covered in warm temperate/subtropical forests.

I said that one mark against the US is that some of it's modern development is same-y, but that's true for a lot of cities around the world. Attacking the US for highways and commercial elements like big box stores that France has plenty of is just silly. You're quite arrogant.



The US by no means has "the most homogenous architecture in the world", considering that it's list of indigenous architectural styles is longer than some European nations...You're just another arrogant Europhile.

France and Spain have a depth of architectural history, sure, as well as a moderate amount of diversity, but they don't necessarily have the range of diverse built environments that the US does, which has modernist cities in all sorts of different layouts, featuring all sorts of different building styles, with skyscrapers in bauhaus, gothic, art deco, modern, and art nouveau styles, outlying residential architecture of all types, old colonial cities representing influence from a creole of European nations, notably Spain, the Netherlands, France, and Britain, cities utilizing ancient native American styles, and a range of climate and geography greater than that of any European country, which certainly helps.

Are all of those cities, or parts of those cities absolutely beautiful? No. Are some of them less attractive than others? Yes. Are there plenty of same-y or similar looking cities across the US? Yes. That doesn't mean the US doesn't have a diverse array of cities, design-wise.

Me and the OP explained why America is developmentally and architecturally diverse, using specific examples, and your knee-jerk Anti-Americanism has you attempting to dispute it by singling out random elements like highways, asphalt, and chain stores, that suburbs and industrial areas of any western country have, in a futile attempt to dispute that American cities have distinct cultural identities - it comes across as extremely arrogant and ignorant. It's always Europeans who act like you who accuse Americans of arrogance or ignorance, it's quite astounding and hypocritical.

What you describe here, is the essence of ALL American cities, lol.
The huge parking lots, the "asphalt and concrete" ( to better accommodate the cars and car dependency,) the sky-scrapers, the "downtowns" and suburbs, the huge shopping malls/chain stores - it's all essentially American design of the cities and all American cities are amazingly the same.
(That "colonial style" of older houses here and there are basically the same as well - you've seen couple of them, you've seen them all.)
If European ( or any other) cities have huge parking lots and "chain stores" - it's only because they are trying to emulate the US.
Originally, European cities don't even have such definition as "downtown" and suburbs - they have the center of the city, the older part, usually with historic architecture that is very variable, and newer districts.

Sorry if it hurts your feelings, but it is what it is.
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Old 05-01-2020, 06:36 PM
 
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While American cities certainly lack the diversity on display in European countries, they aren’t as homogeneous as some claim. I can easily tell the difference between New York, San Francisco and Las Vegas. It becomes harder when you try to compare midsize cities like Omaha and Cleveland.
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Old 05-01-2020, 07:31 PM
 
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Originally Posted by erasure View Post
What you describe here, is the essence of ALL American cities, lol.
The huge parking lots, the "asphalt and concrete" ( to better accommodate the cars and car dependency,) the sky-scrapers, the "downtowns" and suburbs, the huge shopping malls/chain stores - it's all essentially American design of the cities and all American cities are amazingly the same.
(That "colonial style" of older houses here and there are basically the same as well - you've seen couple of them, you've seen them all.)
If European ( or any other) cities have huge parking lots and "chain stores" - it's only because they are trying to emulate the US.
Originally, European cities don't even have such definition as "downtown" and suburbs - they have the center of the city, the older part, usually with historic architecture that is very variable, and newer districts.

Sorry if it hurts your feelings, but it is what it is.
Parking lots exist in European cities. They also don't negate architectural dynamism and diversity. And chain stores are present ALL OVER EUROPE.

Europe has a collection of large cities with historic downtowns, historic smaller towns, etc, but it has parking lots and chain stores and highways EVERYWHERE, and a number of cities that are modernist and boring, regardless of whether you want to impugn that it's all America's fault - Europe has plenty of ugly commercial architecture.

You need to get over yourself. Your last statement is ironic; your feelings are clearly hurt that people don't admit Europe is the pinnacle of society.

I didn't insult and denigrate Europe. You're basically insulting and denigrating the US by ignoring the subject of the argument, which is about architectural diversity, not about subjective attractiveness, and by attacking the US for elements that are ubiquitous across every western nation.

Europe has some gorgeous cities surrounded by atrociously ugly development consisting of dystopian tower blocks and attached, boxy suburban homes. At least the US has cultivated aesthetic suburbs and residential housing, which Europe has utterly neglected to do.

I've traveled throughout Europe and within multiple European countries. You have highways, parking lots, and big box stores across your suburban areas, small towns, and many of your large cities.

Stop being a gross hypocrite. European cities aren't that diverse. Many are pretty, but European cities don't have dynamism in modern architecture, and they protect an array of indigenous architectural styles jealously - IE, many don't represent a cross-cultural array of influences, and many aren't that global and culturally distinct on a large scale, due to their reduced size.

I didn't say France or Spain wasn't diverse, might I add. I have no idea why your arrogant self is getting mad that I didn't admit that the United States was basically culturally inferior to the entire continent of Europe in every way.

This is why I utterly avoid Europe. Been there, done that. You people have such bad attitudes, and you're some of the most prejudiced, conservative, condescending, hypocritical, and provincial people on earth - and you fancy yourselves enlightened, liberal, and accepting! LOL.

Quote:
While American cities certainly lack the diversity on display in European countries, they aren’t as homogeneous as some claim. I can easily tell the difference between New York, San Francisco and Las Vegas. It becomes harder when you try to compare midsize cities like Omaha and Cleveland.
American cities absolutely do not lack the diversity of "European countries". You can't speak of a continent so generally, because guess what, the UK, the Nordic countries, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, and the entirety of eastern Europe are far more architecturally homogeneous than the US is, I don't know how that can be argued. Italy, Spain, and France are more or less comparable.

This isn't about beauty, per se, or subjective aesthetic opinions, it's about which country has the greatest diversity of urban environments/cultures, and I'm sorry, but the US has colonial influences from a variety of nations, native/ancient architectural influences, native developments like the skyscraper, plains vernacular architecture, American colonial style, transplanted styles, and everything from gleaming metropolises built in all sorts of different manners and layouts, with huge neon strips, nearby mountains, surrounding old American main streets, you have old bath towns in the middle of mountains with art deco skyscrapers, near chateaus from the gilded age, Italianate/Mediterranean style Californian cities, colonial seaside towns with wooden shacks, cities containing colorful residential architecture and Spanish Presidios...

France has some medieval villages - that are pretty - but they all look the same, and have similar architecture. Where's the entirely modernist French cities? Where are the cities built entirely from international influences? Where are these places?

Last edited by bellatrixwand; 05-01-2020 at 07:51 PM..
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Old 05-01-2020, 07:35 PM
 
19,265 posts, read 15,970,938 times
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Originally Posted by Milky Way Resident View Post
While American cities certainly lack the diversity on display in European countries, they aren’t as homogeneous as some claim. I can easily tell the difference between New York, San Francisco and Las Vegas. It becomes harder when you try to compare midsize cities like Omaha and Cleveland.

Add New Orleans there ( probably.)
As for the rest - ...
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