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Old 05-05-2009, 12:03 PM
 
14 posts, read 46,863 times
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It's all pure speculation, but 80 years from now what will America's cities look like? It would be impossible to predict but interesting to speculate. Think back 80 years from now, 1929. The roarings 20s were still roaring. Who could have predicted:

-A huge stock market crash
-A great depression lasting 10 years
-A World War larger and more deadly than the first
-The complete abandonment of our inter-city passenger rail system and intra-city street cars
-The almost-complete abandonment of many rust-belt cities, lots of major cities losing over 50% of their population (Detroit, St Louis, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Buffalo, Cleveland, etc)
-Huge mass suburbanization of our metropolitan areas
-Southern and western sun belt cities like Phoenix became top 10 in population from around only 15,000 people in 1930
-Commercial airline travel becomes so affordable to the masses
-A long cold war involving nuclear weapons
-We would put men on the moon then give up on it
-Computers and the internet changing how communication, business, and information is shared, which transforms how we live our lives.

None of that could have been predicted 80 years ago today. That being said, what would our cities look like for our kids and grandkids 75-80 years from now? I'm 32, so I probably won't make it long enough to see, but it is interesting to speculate.

I'm going to start by suggesting that cities like Detroit and St Louis with "urban prairies" and fresh water access become a place for migration again from the southwest. When fuel prices become too high for food to be shipped long distances, having urban gardens/farms mixed in the cities would be a huge benefit. Those rust belt cities already have the infrastructure and potential urban farmland available. And with water shortages in cities like LA, San Diego, Vegas, and Phoenix, additional population can't be sustained so people may be forced to move back to water-saturated cities on the Ohio, Mississippi Rivers and the Great Lakes.
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Old 05-05-2009, 12:18 PM
 
2,437 posts, read 7,673,566 times
Reputation: 1523
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevieD View Post
Think back 80 years from now, 1929. The roarings 20s were still roaring. Who could have predicted:

-A huge stock market crash
-A great depression lasting 10 years
-A World War larger and more deadly than the first
-The complete abandonment of our inter-city passenger rail system and intra-city street cars
-The almost-complete abandonment of many rust-belt cities, lots of major cities losing over 50% of their population (Detroit, St Louis, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Buffalo, Cleveland, etc)
-Huge mass suburbanization of our metropolitan areas
-Southern and western sun belt cities like Phoenix became top 10 in population from around only 15,000 people in 1930
-Commercial airline travel becomes so affordable to the masses
-A long cold war involving nuclear weapons
-We would put men on the moon then give up on it
-Computers and the internet changing how communication, business, and information is shared, which transforms how we live our lives.
Not me. However, I did predict that a former Bodybuilding Champion and Hollywood Action Hero from Austria would someday rule the west... Dangit! I should have put some serious cash down on that one...
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Old 05-05-2009, 12:25 PM
 
Location: West Cobb County, GA (Atlanta metro)
9,191 posts, read 31,705,019 times
Reputation: 5219
This is more appropriate in the city vs room as it does not address a specific question/item or relocation issue. Moving.
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Old 05-05-2009, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Phoenix
7,428 posts, read 8,595,372 times
Reputation: 6279
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevieD View Post
It's all pure speculation, but 80 years from now what will America's cities look like? It would be impossible to predict but interesting to speculate. Think back 80 years from now, 1929. The roarings 20s were still roaring. Who could have predicted:

-A huge stock market crash
-A great depression lasting 10 years
-A World War larger and more deadly than the first
-The complete abandonment of our inter-city passenger rail system and intra-city street cars
-The almost-complete abandonment of many rust-belt cities, lots of major cities losing over 50% of their population (Detroit, St Louis, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Buffalo, Cleveland, etc)
-Huge mass suburbanization of our metropolitan areas
-Southern and western sun belt cities like Phoenix became top 10 in population from around only 15,000 people in 1930
-Commercial airline travel becomes so affordable to the masses
-A long cold war involving nuclear weapons
-We would put men on the moon then give up on it
-Computers and the internet changing how communication, business, and information is shared, which transforms how we live our lives.

None of that could have been predicted 80 years ago today. That being said, what would our cities look like for our kids and grandkids 75-80 years from now? I'm 32, so I probably won't make it long enough to see, but it is interesting to speculate.

I'm going to start by suggesting that cities like Detroit and St Louis with "urban prairies" and fresh water access become a place for migration again from the southwest. When fuel prices become too high for food to be shipped long distances, having urban gardens/farms mixed in the cities would be a huge benefit. Those rust belt cities already have the infrastructure and potential urban farmland available. And with water shortages in cities like LA, San Diego, Vegas, and Phoenix, additional population can't be sustained so people may be forced to move back to water-saturated cities on the Ohio, Mississippi Rivers and the Great Lakes.
Well, if we couldn't 'predict' those things happening, what makes you think that desalination or other alternatives won't work for the cities you mentioned above?
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Old 05-05-2009, 01:39 PM
 
2,486 posts, read 2,587,903 times
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"The almost-complete abandonment of many rust-belt cities, lots of major cities losing over 50% of their population (Detroit, St Louis, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Buffalo, Cleveland, etc)"

This is one thing I hate, is the complete misunderstanding of some cities population losses. If you came to Pittsburgh you would see that it does not feel like a "complete abandonment with 50% of population loss at all). It makes it sound like it is a ghost town.

Most of these reasons very upon one being that towns like Pittsburgh use to have whole families of Irish Catholics with 12 kids living in one row home which now hosts a single dude or a couple. I am not saying that in Pittsburgh there are not abandoned houses, or that there are some neighborhoods that feel that they have been abandoned. But this statement is not even close to true to the feel you get when you actually go to the city.
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Old 05-05-2009, 01:46 PM
 
Location: Phoenix
7,428 posts, read 8,595,372 times
Reputation: 6279
Quote:
Originally Posted by Awesomo.2000 View Post
"The almost-complete abandonment of many rust-belt cities, lots of major cities losing over 50% of their population (Detroit, St Louis, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Buffalo, Cleveland, etc)"

This is one thing I hate, is the complete misunderstanding of some cities population losses. If you came to Pittsburgh you would see that it does not feel like a "complete abandonment with 50% of population loss at all). It makes it sound like it is a ghost town.

Most of these reasons very upon one being that towns like Pittsburgh use to have whole families of Irish Catholics with 12 kids living in one row home which now hosts a single dude or a couple. I am not saying that in Pittsburgh there are not abandoned houses, or that there are some neighborhoods that feel that they have been abandoned. But this statement is not even close to true to the feel you get when you actually go to the city.
I'm hoping Cleveland rebounds. It has great potential with its infrastructure and old building stock already in place. Unfortunately, some of it is empty.
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Old 05-05-2009, 01:48 PM
 
14 posts, read 46,863 times
Reputation: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Awesomo.2000 View Post
"The almost-complete abandonment of many rust-belt cities, lots of major cities losing over 50% of their population (Detroit, St Louis, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Buffalo, Cleveland, etc)"

This is one thing I hate, is the complete misunderstanding of some cities population losses. If you came to Pittsburgh you would see that it does not feel like a "complete abandonment with 50% of population loss at all). It makes it sound like it is a ghost town.

Most of these reasons very upon one being that towns like Pittsburgh use to have whole families of Irish Catholics with 12 kids living in one row home which now hosts a single dude or a couple. I am not saying that in Pittsburgh there are not abandoned houses, or that there are some neighborhoods that feel that they have been abandoned. But this statement is not even close to true to the feel you get when you actually go to the city.
Not to bash Pittsburgh in particular, it is a pretty city with the rivers and hills. But come on, Pittsburgh's steel industry was devestated. Did anybody in 1929 predict that? No way. What is the future of Pittsburgh? At one time it was a globally recognized city because of it's steel industry. Now it is not. Will it continue to just be a regional power like it is now, or will it find another nitch and become a world player again because of another reason? That is what I was trying to get at.
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Old 05-05-2009, 01:51 PM
 
14 posts, read 46,863 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZLiam View Post
Well, if we couldn't 'predict' those things happening, what makes you think that desalination or other alternatives won't work for the cities you mentioned above?
That's true. Here in San Diego they are talking of doing that in northern SD County. However it won't serve many people, and is very energy intensive. If energy prices rise exponentially, then desal might not be a viable option. However, if tide/wind/solar power can fuel the desal plant, then it is possible to quench dry-coastal regions like Southern California. Pumping it to Vegas or Phoenix could be another issue, but who knows.

(By the way, the San Diego City council is actually voting today whether or not to authorize mandatory water rationing.)
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Old 05-05-2009, 02:43 PM
 
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California will have more in common with the Rust Belt than most other parts of the Western US. Detroit with palm trees and hablando Espanol.
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Old 05-06-2009, 01:55 PM
 
Location: Columbus,Ohio
1,014 posts, read 3,317,725 times
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I feel there will be reverse demographics with a major shift- Vanilla cities and older inner ring burbs and chocolate and toffee suburbs and exurbs. The rust belt and East coast cities will have experienced large scale revival. Inner city neighborhoods and inner ring burbs that had seen major demolition of homes and that are now urban prairies will be rebuilt with infill that closely resemble the original homes and apartment buildings. Rural areas will be diverse-white,black , Hispanic and Asian. The southern sunbelt cities from Virginia south will be black except for the cities in Florida ( they will be very diverse)and the cities in the southwest from Texas to the west coast and through the Rockies ( Denver area) will be largely Hispanic except for San Francisco , Seattle and Portland ,Ore. - they will have a large Asian population. The cities in the Midwest and East Coast north of DC will be primarily white because of very large scale gentrification. Puerto Rican and Dominican Hispanics that are now on the East Coast and Chicago will migrate to Florida as well as Afro Caribbean people. The African immigrants will move in the to the southern cities and assimilate with the AAs. Everyone will have their own piece of the American soil and hatred and racism will subside. I also foresee alot more interrracial couples and they will settle into the small towns and rural areas.

Last edited by otters21; 05-06-2009 at 02:36 PM..
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