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Old 06-02-2017, 07:41 PM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
8,231 posts, read 4,011,658 times
Reputation: 5323

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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilliesPhan2013 View Post
DISCLAIMER: I have nothing against the city of Phoenix. I do, however, have an opinion that may be misconstrued as such.

To be very honest, I really don't care if Phoenix surpasses Philly in population numbers.

The only reason why Phoenix, along with a few other cities, continue to grow at their current respective rates can largely be attributed to their sheer size. Philadelphia doesn't (and shouldn't*) have the power to readily annex land. I wouldn't want miles of homogeneous suburban McMansions (save for parts of the Far Northeast) to be within the boundaries considered to be the City of Philadelphia, which is precisely the case in Phoenix. This is why I consider Phoenix (and Houston to an extent) to be more of an overgrown suburb with polycentric cores than an actual city. It may sound harsh, but Phoenix lacks the density, transit infrastructure, cultural amenities, global profile, business environment, educational institutions, media market, GDP profile, etc. to be considered an actual city, or at least one that is on par with Philly. I would never live in a city where a car is almost required to live.

The important things to remember: Philly is still growing, looks better than it has in a long time, is well-poised for future job and population growth, and is more of a world-class city than Phoenix. We also have MUCH more to offer at the MSA and CSA levels, and in terms of connectivity with other great Northeast Corridor cities.

*=I wouldn't mind annexing Lower Merion, Cheltenham, and Tinicum Townships, however. I also wouldn't be opposed to swapping our southwestern border with the Darby Creek instead of Cobbs Creek. Any annexation would be interesting, as Philly is a consolidated city-county. If Philly did annex land, would Philadelphia County simultaneously be expanded to include these new city areas? Would Philly then become a city that lies within multiple counties? The legalities would certainly be interesting.
Ever read the book "Cities Without Suburbs" by David Rusk?

Rusk, the former mayor of one such city, Albuquerque, N.M., first wrote this book in the early 1990s and issued a revised edition shortly after 2000. The book examines the performance of those cities which were allowed to annex their suburban growth with those that were not; Rusk found that those that were had better and more effective municipal governance and stronger economies as well.

It certainly seems to me that cities that had the ability to annex their growth - my hometown of Kansas City, Mo., also had the power to do this on its side of the state line - have more affordable housing to boot.

I'm not sure what the Pennsylvania municipal code says about municipalities occupying territory in more than one county; I have this vague recollection that there are one or two such places in the state. I suspect that were Philadelphia to have the power to annex, it would resemble the City and County of Denver in Colorado, where any land annexed to it becomes part of the city-county. Denver spreads across part of five counties as a result, and I believe at least one of its suburbs, Bloomfield, became a city-county too as a defensive move.
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Old 06-02-2017, 08:26 PM
Status: "Living in Pandemica." (set 4 days ago)
 
Location: North by Northwest
7,533 posts, read 10,631,907 times
Reputation: 4793
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilliesPhan2013 View Post
DISCLAIMER: I have nothing against the city of Phoenix. I do, however, have an opinion that may be misconstrued as such.

To be very honest, I really don't care if Phoenix surpasses Philly in population numbers.

The only reason why Phoenix, along with a few other cities, continue to grow at their current respective rates can largely be attributed to their sheer size. Philadelphia doesn't (and shouldn't*) have the power to readily annex land. I wouldn't want miles of homogeneous suburban McMansions (save for parts of the Far Northeast) to be within the boundaries considered to be the City of Philadelphia, which is precisely the case in Phoenix. This is why I consider Phoenix (and Houston to an extent) to be more of an overgrown suburb with polycentric cores than an actual city. It may sound harsh, but Phoenix lacks the density, transit infrastructure, cultural amenities, global profile, business environment, educational institutions, media market, GDP profile, etc. to be considered an actual city, or at least one that is on par with Philly. I would never live in a city where a car is almost required to live.

The important things to remember: Philly is still growing, looks better than it has in a long time, is well-poised for future job and population growth, and is more of a world-class city than Phoenix. We also have MUCH more to offer at the MSA and CSA levels, and in terms of connectivity with other great Northeast Corridor cities.

*=I wouldn't mind annexing Lower Merion, Cheltenham, and Tinicum Townships, however. I also wouldn't be opposed to swapping our southwestern border with the Darby Creek instead of Cobbs Creek. Any annexation would be interesting, as Philly is a consolidated city-county. If Philly did annex land, would Philadelphia County simultaneously be expanded to include these new city areas? Would Philly then become a city that lies within multiple counties? The legalities would certainly be interesting.
AFAIK, townships are confined by counties, but cities and boroughs can cross county borders--Telford being the nearest example. That doesn't mean a township couldn't be annexed by a city or borough in a neighboring county. Most of Pennsylvania's cities and boroughs were carved out of some township or another.

However, with the possible exception of some Southeast Delco suburbs, none of the surrounding municipalities have anything to gain from annexation. Conversely, the few areas that might benefit wouldn't really help Philadelphia.

Aside from all that, I think that Philadelphia's city limits are appropriately sized, the Act of Consolidation being a good first and last hurrah.
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Old 06-02-2017, 08:37 PM
 
Location: The City of Brotherly Love
1,189 posts, read 894,686 times
Reputation: 3054
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post
Ever read the book "Cities Without Suburbs" by David Rusk?

Rusk, the former mayor of one such city, Albuquerque, N.M., first wrote this book in the early 1990s and issued a revised edition shortly after 2000. The book examines the performance of those cities which were allowed to annex their suburban growth with those that were not; Rusk found that those that were had better and more effective municipal governance and stronger economies as well.

It certainly seems to me that cities that had the ability to annex their growth - my hometown of Kansas City, Mo., also had the power to do this on its side of the state line - have more affordable housing to boot.

I'm not sure what the Pennsylvania municipal code says about municipalities occupying territory in more than one county; I have this vague recollection that there are one or two such places in the state. I suspect that were Philadelphia to have the power to annex, it would resemble the City and County of Denver in Colorado, where any land annexed to it becomes part of the city-county. Denver spreads across part of five counties as a result, and I believe at least one of its suburbs, Bloomfield, became a city-county too as a defensive move.
I've heard of that book during my classes related to urban planning and sustainable design, but I'll have to read it once I get a chance. I would be especially interested to see the metrics used for "effective government". Before diving into it, I would automatically counter that older cities that typically do not (or cannot) , such as Philadelphia or Boston, have had historical cases of government corruption that (usually newer) cities that do/can annex simply do not have due to not existing as long as the government structure of other cities.

Having more land available over a larger area will certainly lead to affordability. Philly can be both urban and affordable, however. Our answer should be greater density, a mix of uses (particularly along commercial streets), eliminated parking minimums, transit-oriented development, and a more extensive transit system. PHA-style suburban developments within our dense city fabric will reduce affordability by taking up a greater amount of our constrained land.

I can tell you that Bethlehem is one of those PA municipalities that lie within multiple counties. There is a small sliver on the West Side that is actually in Lehigh County. The rest is in Northampton County. I imagine that the process of annexation would be similar to Denver's, where new land would become part of the city-county; however, like you, I'm not sure what PA's municipal code will say about that specific issue.
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Old 06-02-2017, 08:41 PM
 
Location: The City of Brotherly Love
1,189 posts, read 894,686 times
Reputation: 3054
Quote:
Originally Posted by ElijahAstin View Post
AFAIK, townships are confined by counties, but cities and boroughs can cross county borders--Telford being the nearest example. That doesn't mean a township couldn't be annexed by a city or borough in a neighboring county. Most of Pennsylvania's cities and boroughs were carved out of some township or another.

However, with the possible exception of some Southeast Delco suburbs, none of the surrounding municipalities have anything to gain from annexation. Conversely, the few areas that might benefit wouldn't really help Philadelphia.

Aside from all that, I think that Philadelphia's city limits are appropriately sized, the Act of Consolidation being a good first and last hurrah.
I agree completely! Philly is a great size as it is. I just saw other's arguments of annexing areas that share a continuous dense urban fabric with the city, such as Southeast Delco, Lower Merion, and Cheltenham Township. I think that Philly would stand to gain if we annexed Tinicum Township, however. This would give the city unilateral control over the airport, which spans Philadelphia and Delaware Counties.
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Old 06-03-2017, 12:19 AM
 
10,789 posts, read 6,566,963 times
Reputation: 3925
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilliesPhan2013 View Post
The city can actually accommodate more than 2 million residents. What a lot of people forget is that much of the Central and Far Northeast was nothing more than farmland before the end of World War II. This is also what explains the development pattern in the Andorra and Roxborough sections of the Northwest, and the Eastwick section of the Southwest. If we rebuilt all of the underdeveloped sections of North and West Philly, revitalized the Lower Northeast, and encouraged denser development in the Northeast, then we could fit more than 2 million people.

In order for the city to surpass 2 million residents, transit projects must happen. The Roosevelt Boulevard Subway-Elevated, an El extension to Rhawn Street via Frankford Avenue, a PATCO extension to University City, a northern and southern extension of the Broad Street Line to Cheltenham Avenue via Stenton and Ogontz Avenues and to the Navy Yard respectively, and turning the Ridge-Spur into an actual subway with termini at Bells Mills Road (via Ridge Avenue) and Oregon Avenue (via 8th Street). The 52 should also be converted into a Subway-Surface trolley line, and Cottman, Lehigh, and Allegheny Avenues could all use trolleys traversing their respective lengths.
You never think or post about where the funding would come from wrt these transit fantasies. Additionally you have no focus, it seems, on the level of community destroying construction that would ensue. Example. Rebuilding the western portion of the
MFL, which was delayed multiple times, obliterated lots of retail that could have survived along Market St.
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Old 06-03-2017, 06:23 AM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
8,231 posts, read 4,011,658 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyb01 View Post
You never think or post about where the funding would come from wrt these transit fantasies. Additionally you have no focus, it seems, on the level of community destroying construction that would ensue. Example. Rebuilding the western portion of the
MFL, which was delayed multiple times, obliterated lots of retail that could have survived along Market St.
Sometimes some pain must be endured for long-term gain.

The Market Street el was a century old. It was getting rickety. We'd already learned how to build el structures that didn't throw the whole street into darkness and put support columns in the path of traffic by 1920 (Frankford portion of the Frankford El, which AFAIK was the first center-pillar-supported el structure in the country; that's now the standard design for reasons that should be obvious). I'm not denying that the long construction period put some businesses under, but now that it's complete, new ones have taken their place, and we won't have to worry about something like this for another 100 years or so.

Yes, the rapid transit extensions PhilliesPhan2013 outlines would cost tens of billions of dollars - and they wouldn't be undertaken all at once, or maybe not even at all (you do know we got about one-sixth of the subways the City Councils voted to approve back in 1913, right?). I would suggest that these should not be impediments to advocating for them. Unless we keep the idea alive, we won't get any at all. The Northeast Spur (Boulevard subway) is especially important.
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Old 06-03-2017, 12:15 PM
 
10,789 posts, read 6,566,963 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post
Sometimes some pain must be endured for long-term gain.

The Market Street el was a century old. It was getting rickety. We'd already learned how to build el structures that didn't throw the whole street into darkness and put support columns in the path of traffic by 1920 (Frankford portion of the Frankford El, which AFAIK was the first center-pillar-supported el structure in the country; that's now the standard design for reasons that should be obvious). I'm not denying that the long construction period put some businesses under, but now that it's complete, new ones have taken their place, and we won't have to worry about something like this for another 100 years or so.

Yes, the rapid transit extensions PhilliesPhan2013 outlines would cost tens of billions of dollars - and they wouldn't be undertaken all at once, or maybe not even at all (you do know we got about one-sixth of the subways the City Councils voted to approve back in 1913, right?). I would suggest that these should not be impediments to advocating for them. Unless we keep the idea alive, we won't get any at all. The Northeast Spur (Boulevard subway) is especially important.
Sigh lol... Sandy, try to remember that I have 100 years worth of family history in the Haddington, Carroll Park, Cobbs Creek and Overbrook. Decades of history in W. Philly.

I know how old the El, as transit, is. I was riding on it before you were born. So lecturing me about it is, generally speaking, a waste of time. My sister lives a block away from it and the re-construction was just as destruction to some retail nearby as I posted. Go to the 6000 thru 6200 block of Market, for instance. The El re-build, in that area, destroyed businesses that had been there for years. Not much is going on there now and probably won't.

Nothing again about who would pay for any transit expansions.
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Old 06-03-2017, 12:20 PM
 
4,090 posts, read 2,253,210 times
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Amazing how for some things they hold more endearing? Anyone can be a NIMBY.... and then for things they knock others for acting as or being one.....

But tis true. Philly is best to upgrade and restore for more decades of life. What it currently has in transit. Cost will have the expansions to Big new projects voted down anyway by both sides.
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Old 06-03-2017, 07:18 PM
 
Location: The City of Brotherly Love
1,189 posts, read 894,686 times
Reputation: 3054
Quote:
Originally Posted by kyb01 View Post
You never think or post about where the funding would come from wrt these transit fantasies. Additionally you have no focus, it seems, on the level of community destroying construction that would ensue. Example. Rebuilding the western portion of the
MFL, which was delayed multiple times, obliterated lots of retail that could have survived along Market St.
Like MarketStEl mentioned, I mainly do this to keep the idea of transit expansion alive. These are expansions that should have been undertaken decades ago, but did not happen due to a lack of political will (when the city had the funds) and the diversion of funds to other project. If the federal spigot ever turns back on like it did after World War II, these expansions should remain in the minds of those who have the power to make them happen.

I remember the rebuilding of the El really well, along with how it ruined some of the businesses below. Appropriate mitigation strategies would have to be planned and executed, and they would likely be more efficient than in previous times. In order to continue our growth as a city and (hopefully) keep it sustainable, transit expansions will be necessary. We are severely under-supplied on heavy rail rapid transit for a city of our size.
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Old 06-03-2017, 07:42 PM
 
Location: Vineland, NJ
8,541 posts, read 11,255,638 times
Reputation: 5517
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilliesPhan2013 View Post
Like MarketStEl mentioned, I mainly do this to keep the idea of transit expansion alive. These are expansions that should have been undertaken decades ago, but did not happen due to a lack of political will (when the city had the funds) and the diversion of funds to other project. If the federal spigot ever turns back on like it did after World War II, these expansions should remain in the minds of those who have the power to make them happen.

I remember the rebuilding of the El really well, along with how it ruined some of the businesses below. Appropriate mitigation strategies would have to be planned and executed, and they would likely be more efficient than in previous times. In order to continue our growth as a city and (hopefully) keep it sustainable, transit expansions will be necessary. We are severely under-supplied on heavy rail rapid transit for a city of our size.
It's true that rapid transit in the city is under-supplied, but Philly's regional rail system picks up a lot of the slack. I also think Philly has the best commuter rail system within cities. Maybe even the best in North America. Cities like Phoenix are about 100 years behind when compared to the transportation infrastructure of Philly.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SEPTA_...ail_System.png
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