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Old 09-30-2015, 11:28 PM
 
Location: Toronto
12,893 posts, read 12,367,161 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bostonkid123 View Post
I think SF will just do fine. People are moving there like it's the only city on this planet. Another improvement will be SF's future connectivity with rest of Cali, the opening of the nation's first high speed rail hub in downtown SF that will connect it seamlessly to LA. I just wish Toronto/Canada could get its acts together and revamp VIA Rail into something that actually resembles a 21st century rail service.
I didn't say S.F isn't going to do fine or is not doing fine. As a matter of fact, there are elements to its economy, particularly high tech and innovation that we could do well to learn from. Obviously I think Toronto has its own strengths - what I was referring to was at least in the short and probably mid to long term Toronto and particularly the DT core has a significant growth advantage in terms of population which I think will do better for it in terms of pedestrian vibrancy than S.F. That was really all I was getting at. The people moving to S.F - while probably very fine and intelligent people are not moving to the city and DT core in the numbers that the people are moving to DT Toronto. Unless you have stats to demonstrate otherwise?

Last edited by fusion2; 09-30-2015 at 11:52 PM..
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Old 10-01-2015, 10:25 AM
 
Location: 905
161 posts, read 583,024 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botticelli View Post
I'd pick Los Angeles over SF any day.
+1

I love LA
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Old 12-27-2015, 07:58 PM
 
Location: Europe
50 posts, read 79,970 times
Reputation: 65
Default an opinion from elsewhere

As a Canadian from the west coast, having visited SF since I was a little kid about 12 times, and later, having lived in Toronto for about a year aged 20 / 21, I think this is rather apples and oranges. Overall, both areas have that metropolitan feel.

There extensive suburbs and cities link by Commuter rail in SF to Santa Clara, San Jose, etc, just as there is a GO train network. SF still has several major freeways. TO has several major freeways. And so on. Both are major "Alpha" cities and centres for texhnologiy and finance, both have big financial downtowns with very tall buildings .... OK, OK, the difference?

Due to perhaps a cold winter, Toronto, as many other Eastern Canadian and Northern US cities, have most houses, local public buldings, and even highrises, (on occasion) are made of brick. At the time of Toronto's founding, and subsequent periods of growth, (from the 20's to now) Scottish Utilitarianism was in vogue, and this reflects somewhat in the often-austere, some say "hard" feel to the city.
*
(((( Hey, Toronto has fantastic netwrk ravine parks and loads of greenspace
*[bzzzt* TO, hey, I wonder if the way they buit right to the top of Peaks in SF, totally mutilating those sacred peaks),.. be allowed if that were TO????? .... as a kid, I remeber watching from my aunt's balcony, the bare grass pointed hills, and the fog pushing up and over them Maybe TO would have respected that more.] ))))

*But Toronto maximizes what it has geographically, the flat downtown, then the slope up and along Eglinton.... in addition, Toronto has streets of Gingerbread Victorian done in Brick, and a rather elegant feel here and there, not to mention the network of small, smart steets in the central city.

What does San Francisco have, in that case?
Three essential things: 1: a sunny, mild climate; 2: An architecture that more exhuberantly expresses its historic past. 3; The redoubtably splendid aspect of its location.
Yes, SF has the Tenderloin, (bring your airsickness bag), hunters point, and a lot of bleak industrial areas
along the east shore (so does TO, along much of the lakeshore),
but the charm, the texture, the magic in SF is in the onmnispresent vies (for starters): at any point in the city where you can see down a street, any dockland, any hill, you are forced to take in the red GGB, the steep hills, -the ones you're walking up, and the cliffs and high bliffs of Marin County.
If you don't like that, there's the double-deck gigantor, The Bay Bridge (which makes a stunning way to enter the city).

Don't like either sunny weather or fog, year-round temps 12° to 25°C? You're in the wrong city, 'cause here it's like this pretty much year-round.****
(compare this with five months of winter; an up-and-down yo-yo autumn, a 13.25 day spring, and a summer of heat, humidity, and haze, back in TO -- hey sorry, TO --but that's just the way it is, you understand)

The salubrious climate of San Francisco which often includes more fog in summer than inwinter, due to the thermal trough effect of the Central Valley, and the cool, foggy Pacific on the city's west shore, is due largely to the mostly-year-round-presence of the California High Pressure zone (even more evident in LA)

The result ......... temperate sunny mild inviting weather most of the time, with winter spurts of rain, and an autumn that includes the highest average temperatures of the year. Sunny, often breezy spring months. Flowers and blooming plants year-round. Often T-shirt weather in January.

§ This, architecture-wise has the tendency to want to "bring the outside" in, and many (if not perhaps most) houses and apartments have terraces, balconies, with a palm of nearly any species studding gardens, along with cactus.
Not being made of brick, but of wood, the houses in some areas are painted in different colors.

* I do not believe this is the case much in Toronto. I have seen magnificent townhouses in the central city, but they are more or less all brick, like much of the suburbs, (though I remeber one area in Islington, wealthy and fairly recent, where many houses used white siding to give a 'farmhouse' effect)

Back to SF. The mult-colored houses give a luminosity to the city. The views, often sudden and unexpected, are heart-stopping. Whereas Toronto was founded strictly on an English/Scottish plan of principle, SF was at first Spanish, then American, and in addition SF had something Toronto didn't have on the same scale: a major economic boom brought on by the gold rush, and resulting in a lot of money coming into the city, such that it was nicknamed 'The Paris of the West'

The houses that cover the hills of san fran are about the same epoch - the Victorian houses, that is- only trimmed with style and flair done more easily with wood, but the bright white stucco of Spanish-origin designed houses. avoiding the tenderloin, find The venerable Fisherman's wharf, North Beach, The Cliff House restaurant, in daytime, .......... (when you look out to the Pacific)

If it sounds like I'm rooting for San Fran, I'm not really. I'm trying to be ojective. Toronto has charms and aspects that are great and unique to it.
Overall, I admit having to give the ribbon to SF. It just has a beauty and invigoration, combined with classic elegance (like the 1905 Palace of Fine Arts) that seems to surpass - in beaty - TO

But hold it, right there TO. You're one of the 10 most important cities finacially in the world, big no-nonses freeways and buildings as a statement,
have a huge airport to one day rival ORD or ATL. You're the financial centre of one of the G7. Great park and green belt system. Don't lose any sleep!
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Old 01-01-2016, 03:35 PM
 
3,335 posts, read 2,240,986 times
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Toronto is way more urban through the area with downtown being slightly more urban due to lots of residential high rises in the periphery of downtown like CN tower and waterfront with some in the core recently.
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Old 01-01-2016, 06:31 PM
 
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I'd go with the fact that the state of California has a population equal to Canada's as a country. There are lots of people moving through SF as visitors. Toronto's a little more geographically isolated, with a smaller population in the surrounding region. Less traffic and bustle I guess than SF would see.
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Old 01-01-2016, 09:32 PM
 
Location: Thunder Bay, ON
2,708 posts, read 4,059,600 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ottawa2011 View Post
I'd go with the fact that the state of California has a population equal to Canada's as a country. There are lots of people moving through SF as visitors. Toronto's a little more geographically isolated, with a smaller population in the surrounding region. Less traffic and bustle I guess than SF would see.
From your comment it's like you think Toronto is located somewhere in the Northwest Territories...

Population within various distances

50 miles
SF: 7m
Toronto: 7m

100 miles
SF: 11m
Toronto: 11m

150 miles
SF: 12m
Toronto: 13m

200 miles
SF: 14m
Toronto: 19m

250 miles
SF: 15m
Toronto: 33m

300 miles
SF: 16m
Toronto: 41m

350 miles
SF: 23m
Toronto: 76m

400 miles
SF: 33m
Toronto: 97m

450 miles
SF: 37m
Toronto: 119m

500 miles
SF: 41m
Toronto: 131m

...
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Old 01-01-2016, 09:36 PM
 
3,431 posts, read 3,559,488 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by memph View Post
From your comment it's like you think Toronto is located somewhere in the Northwest Territories...

Population within various distances


...
The thing is, a lot of the population that you're including is found in Detroit, Chicago, Boston, NYC etc... not all of them come across the border to Toronto very frequently. There's no international border to impede California visitors from making a weekend trip to SF. I still think the domestic U.S. traffic in and out of SF gives it more of a buzz, a fast pace for living and for business.

On the plus side, Toronto doesn't have the Tenderloin. So there's that.
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Old 01-01-2016, 09:58 PM
 
2,253 posts, read 3,083,738 times
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San Francisco feels neither more nor less urban than Toronto IMO.
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Old 01-02-2016, 01:06 PM
 
10,847 posts, read 12,391,227 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ottawa2011 View Post
The thing is, a lot of the population that you're including is found in Detroit, Chicago, Boston, NYC etc... not all of them come across the border to Toronto very frequently. There's no international border to impede California visitors from making a weekend trip to SF. I still think the domestic U.S. traffic in and out of SF gives it more of a buzz, a fast pace for living and for business.

On the plus side, Toronto doesn't have the Tenderloin. So there's that.
Agree. It is silly to pretend the border does nothing. Still more than half Americans don't even have a passport, many who do are also less likely to come to Canada for work or travel than an American city.

SF doesn't feel very urban to me either. Only the NW 20% does. The rest feels boring and suburban.
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Old 01-04-2016, 04:58 PM
 
29 posts, read 31,979 times
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I've lived in both cities. Twenty years in SF and recently moved to Toronto. They are both very special cities with incredible diversity and energy. There is definitely a difference between the East Coast and West Coast vibes and architectural styles. But the main difference, as has already been stated, is that there just isn't much physical space in SF. The awesomeness is concentrated, and a visitor, who can only see so much, will be exposed to more of it in SF than a visitor to Toronto. And the landscape is a bit more picturesque with hills and ocean and year-round greenery due to weather that never gets below freezing--so maybe more inspiring to the visitor.

That said, Toronto feels more "urban" and "big city" to me. Maybe that is because SF will always feel like home so totally unintimidating. But really, a city that you can walk across from one end to the other in a matter of hours can only feel so big.

I think there are a lot of similarities between the cities--mainly their division into distinct neighborhoods that feel like small urban villages. I personally love this, and it's part of why I have felt very much at home in Toronto. It is such a great thing to live in a bustling, cosmopolitan city yet still know all your shopkeepers and neighbors--more so than in most small towns. It is not just an urban jungle that swallows you alive like some other larger cities. They are also both particularly sophisticated cities, and they inspire a certain excitement (in different ways). I've really loved the other two cities I've lived in--Vancouver and Barcelona--but Toronto and SF have a certain something that stand out above the rest for me.
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