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Old 04-19-2015, 06:36 AM
 
Location: Leeds, UK
22,112 posts, read 29,573,026 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NOLA101 View Post

People want a good job. They want a nice home for their family. They want reasonable taxes, decent services, nice neighbors, good schools and the like. The average person worldwide doesn't give a crap about "al fresco dining and public squares". That's why God made Venice, Brugge and long holidays. Generally only someone incredibly narcissistic would value such things over providing for their loved ones.
You're right - the average person worldwide is driven by greed, monetary gain and material possession, which is why Dubai is so popular.

It's just a difference in mindset really, and I find it sad that so many people, especially Americans, are just content with their dour suburban existence and anything relating to culture is not important. I understand the desire to earn more, and to provide, but this doesn't have to be at the expense of everything else. Cities like New York, San Francisco and Washington are perfect examples of this, and it's hard not to argue that the three aforementioned cities are infinitely more interesting than any of the larger southern cities, and at the same time, they are three of the wealthiest metro areas in the US (admittedly they are far more expensive). The significant growth of cities like Atlanta can be largely attributed to the lower living costs and superior weather, not much else, and the higher living costs in places like New York is, or at least was, a result of how many people wanted to live there. Atlanta and Houston will probably see their living costs rise as well, with the booming populations.

I do agree with you that it is not causation, I just don't see why places like Atlanta and Houston have to be the super-suburban sprawling messes that they are. People can drive if they want, but would it hurt for these cities to improve public transit, or to increase interaction on street level, so their downtowns aren't empy? If we all shared this mindset of 'money first, culture last', the world would be very boring.

Oh, and a few points - London, like New York, experienced a big slump in population post-WW2, and it wasn't until the 90s that London began growing again. But between 2001 and 2011, it grew by 13%, so yes, it is growing very fast, and official estimates state that its population has now exceeded its pre-WW2 peak. We won't know for certain until 2021, but considering how fast London's population is growing, it's a reasonable assumption.

Last edited by dunno what to put here; 04-19-2015 at 07:35 AM..
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Old 04-19-2015, 07:47 AM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
1,386 posts, read 1,558,056 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dunno what to put here View Post
It's just a difference in mindset really, and I find it sad that so many people, especially Americans, are just content with their dour suburban existence and anything relating to culture is not important.
I got to ask what is so great culturally about people being packed like a can of sardines in a bus or subway to get around in a city? At least in your car you can listen to your radio and you have your own private space when traveling in a city. Using public transportation if people are loud arguing you got to just deal with it. It's really fun when people are also sick using public transportation when they throw up and you got to smell the stench of that until you get off...great times indeed.

As far as the suburbs go people moved out of cities in mass after WW2 and that gave rise to the suburbs because people wanting to have a yard. They wanted there own home and not just live in some apartment paying rent. They also had the money to make that happen. Cities had a lot more crime and could be quite filthy compared to the suburbs is another reason why people moved in mass out of cities and into suburbs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dunno what to put here
I understand the desire to earn more, and to provide, but this doesn't have to be at the expense of everything else. Cities like New York, San Francisco and Washington are perfect examples of this, and it's hard not to argue that the three aforementioned cities are infinitely more interesting than any of the larger southern cities, and at the same time, they are three of the wealthiest metro areas in the US (admittedly they are far more expensive).
Honestly most Americans couldn't give a **** less about NYC. NYC is completely over saturated in the media in the US and even Canada as well...literally ever disaster movie made always features NYC being destroyed. After awhile you just don't care about the place because of mass over exposure to it. Given a choice between moving to St Louis, Atlanta, New Orleans, etc or NYC people in the US are going to choice the southern cities the majority of the time. It's not because they aren't as interesting (I would argue New Orleans is more interesting then NYC actually) It's due to everything else like the high cost of living in NYC. the city literally being filthy at times, less personal space, overpopulation, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dunno what to put here
I do agree with you that it is not causation, I just don't see why places like Atlanta and Houston have to be the super-suburban sprawling messes that they are. People can drive if they want, but would it hurt for these cities to improve public transit, or to increase interaction on street level, so their downtowns aren't empy?
Cities like Atlanta and Houston covered so much area compared to NYC because they have the space to do so. NYC is limited in space or the city would've kept pushing outwards and would look a lot like Atlanta with it's sprawl. Also Houston and Atlanta don't cover as much area as Kansas City either which has the most sprawl of any major city in the US that I'm aware of. Kansas City is actually the largest major city in the US area wise I believe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dunno what to put here
If we all shared your mindset then the world would be really boring.
Indeed.
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Old 04-19-2015, 08:03 AM
 
Location: Riding the light...
1,635 posts, read 1,813,303 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
I think part of the answer to the OP is that in North America people tend to value personal space more than public space. And they also have the luxury (affordability) to be able to do that.

As one poster said, many NA cities are moving towards a greater valorization of public spaces (often along pseudo-uropean models) but sometimes the personal space thing is at odds with the public space thing.

Historically, in North America when that conflict happens, personal space wins out. This is what is increasingly happening in Europe as well. Although not on as massive a scale due to reasons of history, land availability, geography, etc.
I'd agree with this response and add that many of those north Americans aren't really interested in the intrusion of people from across town (or perhaps even nearby) into that personal space.
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Old 04-19-2015, 08:14 AM
 
Location: Leeds, UK
22,112 posts, read 29,573,026 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwa1984 View Post
I got to ask what is so great culturally about people being packed like a can of sardines in a bus or subway to get around in a city? At least in your car you can listen to your radio and you have your own private space when traveling in a city. Using public transportation if people are loud arguing you got to just deal with it. It's really fun when people are also sick using public transportation when they throw up and you got to smell the stench of that until you get off...great times indeed.
.
Culturally? Nothing - public transport isn't really 'culture'. It's just nice to have the convenience of public transport. People in European cities drive - most own a car - but the option not to drive exists, because public transport is so widely available, even in suburban areas. Many American cities are the same too. In places like Atlanta, public transport is considerably more limited and not as extensive, so driving is often necessary to get from A to B. These cities could easily expand their public transit. Is there a downside to doing so? Might reduce traffic.

Plus, driving can be stressful, and on a train or bus, you can relax a little and read. And it just saves money as well - especially in Europe where petrol is really expensive.

I've never been on a bus or train when someone threw up. Does that happen a lot where you live?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cwa1984 View Post
Given a choice between moving to St Louis, Atlanta, New Orleans, etc or NYC people in the US are going to choice the southern cities the majority of the time. It's not because they aren't as interesting (I would argue New Orleans is more interesting then NYC actually) It's due to everything else like the high cost of living in NYC. the city literally being filthy at times, less personal space, overpopulation, etc.




Indeed.
Somehow I doubt that. St Louis and New Orleans are two of the most crime-ridden cities in the Western world, let alone the US. Would people really prefer live there over New York? I think most people would prefer to live in New York if cost of living was no factor.
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Old 04-19-2015, 08:19 AM
 
Location: South Jersey
14,497 posts, read 9,428,386 times
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In terms of layout and daily life, I have no desire to emulate Western European cities & towns. I like our way of life vis-à-vis the contemporary European way of life.
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Old 04-19-2015, 08:27 AM
 
3,282 posts, read 3,790,920 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SE9 View Post
It's not about liking to drive, it's about having to.

In London, I don't have to drive as my every transport need is catered for. In Atlanta, I have little choice but to drive.

I like driving, but the pedestrian/multi-mode public transport oriented city lifestyle offered in London is miles better than car dependent Atlanta.
And the cost involved with having to have more than one car. It is very expensive and frustrating, because it takes a large chunk of your income.

I would love to work or take public transportation to work. But in CA it is very time consuming and not very safe.
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Old 04-19-2015, 08:27 AM
 
10,275 posts, read 10,329,498 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dunno what to put here View Post
You're right - the average person worldwide is driven by greed, monetary gain and material possession, which is why Dubai is so popular.
Wow! How can you even live with yourself with such a horribly cynical and negative outlook on humanity?
Quote:
Originally Posted by dunno what to put here View Post
And can you explain to us how a family wanting a nice home, a car, good schools, friendly neighbors, good schools, open space, and a future for their children has to do with "greed, monetary gain and material possession"? Moreover, what do any of these things have to do with "Dubai", which has basically none of these things for the average resident?
"Greed" has nothing to do with urban vs. suburban. If you have ever been to Hong Kong, that is possibly the most money-oriented, quasi-amoral, purely capitalistic city on the planet, yet it's also possibly the most urban city on the planet. The entire point of the city's existence, since its founding, is for wealth accumulation with minimal regulation/taxation. Singapore is not dissimilar though a different type of model. A few Asian cultures are likely the most money-oriented/materialistic on earth yet also among the most urban overall.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dunno what to put here View Post
It's just a difference in mindset really, and I find it sad that so many people, especially Americans, are just content with their dour suburban existence and anything relating to culture is not important.
I'm German, not American, and I live in NYC, in a neighborhood as cosmopolitan and cultured as any on the planet. But nice job with the jealous and ignorant stereotypes. Unlike yourself, I don't hate on other people who live different than myself, and I'm not envious of those who provide well for their families.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dunno what to put here View Post
I understand the desire to earn more, and to provide, but this doesn't have to be at the expense of everything else. Cities like New York, San Francisco and Washington are perfect examples of this, and it's hard not to argue that the three aforementioned cities are infinitely more interesting than any of the larger southern cities, and at the same time, they are three of the wealthiest metro areas in the US (admittedly they are far more expensive).
Actually, no, you're wrong. Only NYC is particularly urban of the three. The Bay Area is overwhelmingly suburban, and in fact the wealthiest parts are the most suburban. The city of SF is only 10% of the metro area, and not particularly urban for global standards. DC is even less so, even more sprawly, wealth even more concentrated in the sprawl, and the city proper is far less than 10% of the metro area population.

In short, the most expensive and desirable parts of the SF and DC metro areas are some of the sprawliest and most auto oriented.

And even in the NYC area, while there is a huge area of urban-centered wealth, there are also large areas of sprawly, suburban wealth. Probably at least half of the region's wealth is in lower density suburban areas. The Hamptons, if you have ever been there, is extreme low density, and yet homes are among the most expensive on the planet. There is almost no equivalent outside of Manhattan and Central London.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dunno what to put here View Post
The significant growth of cities like Atlanta can be largely attributed to the lower living costs and superior weather, not much else, and the higher living costs in places like New York is, or at least was, a result of how many people wanted to live there. Atlanta and Houston will probably see their living costs rise as well, with the booming populations.
None of this makes any sense. Atlanta has the same living costs as Chicago or Philly, with similar home prices, similar taxes and similar costs for consumer goods. Yet Atlanta is vastly more sprawly and auto oriented than either Chicago or Philly.

If you're moving from Chicago or Philly to Atlanta, Houston or Dallas, you won't save any money on an equivalent home. So there are obviously other reasons for the growth (probably jobs). And then what about all the expensive, sprawly cities? LA and San Diego are massively sprawly, yet among the most expensive U.S. cities. LA overall probably has more high-end wealth than any other city on earth excepting NYC and Tokyo, yet doesn't have a single truly urban, transit-oriented neighborhood comparable to what one sees in every city in Europe.

And Atlanta doesn't have particularly good weather. Winters are quite cold, and ice and snow are the norm. Atlanta is in the foothills of the Appalachian mountains, and in extreme northwest Georgia. No one is moving to Atlanta for nice winters.
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Old 04-19-2015, 08:48 AM
 
Location: Leeds, UK
22,112 posts, read 29,573,026 times
Reputation: 8819
I'm too lazy to individually quote, so bear with me...

The point I was making is that culture in many cases has been pushed aside because people are more interested in chasing money than anything else. It isn't necessarily urban vs suburban - just an observation. I think it's hard to deny that people are more materialistic now than they were before. I mentioned Dubai because it is a classic example of greed, totally lacking in culture and the entire existence of the place is based on materialism and money, and although it's 'urban', it's more urban in an American sense, with large highways and tons of cars, so not really pedestrian friendly. I think it's sad.

I think you messed up my quote - but to answer your question, there is nothing wrong with desiring any of those things, but at the same time, why does desiring those things have to mean living in a cultural wasteland devoid of life? Plus, I probably don't understand the obsession with wide open spaces, and I think you can raise a child just as well in an apartment as you can in a detached house. But I realise in the US, inner-cities are dangerous, and lack good schools, whereas in many European cities, the opposite is true - though it's to my understanding that many inner-city areas are being regenerated in the US.

Well, the NYC metro area is largely suburban too, but they are centred on urban cities with dense cores and vastly superior public transit, and these dense cores are often populated by very wealthy individuals, and high-paying jobs are not in short supply.

Oh, really? I checked some comparison websites and they all state that Philly is more pricey than Atlanta in just about every measure conceivable. Same with Houston and Dallas. Where are you getting your figures from?

Atlanta's weather, if you like warmth, is clearly superior to New York or Boston - the winters are much milder, and although snow and ice occur, it is not a common occurrence, compared to the crippling blizzards that occasionally affect the Northern cities (especially in recent years). I think weather is clearly a big factor in people moving away from northern cities, but in any case, the population in places like Boston and New York continue to grow, albeit at a slower pace, so it isn't like people are abandoning them.

Anyway, like I said, I agree with you that there is really no strong link between economic success and whether an area is urban or suburban. I think I've just gone off on a tangent here and started ranting about other things instead, lol. If people prefer the suburban life then that's fine. I might not like it, or even understand it, but that's just me. I just value other things as highly if not more so than economics - I think people underestimate the importance of culture. I'd like my future children to have access to things like that, rather than being trapped in a monotonous suburb with few amenities. Sure, there are vacations, but it's different to actually growing up in that environment.

Last edited by dunno what to put here; 04-19-2015 at 09:00 AM..
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Old 04-19-2015, 10:10 AM
 
Location: San Diego, California Republic
16,588 posts, read 27,379,702 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kikebxl View Post
you (as a whole) kind of don't, because as some other poster said many American cities are trying to reinvent themselves into some new urban planning that puts in the middle of things the person, and not the car.... We are not in the 70s when GM was GM and Detroit was Detroit... And there is an increasing number of Americans who don't have a car (because they choose not to have it). Times are a'changing.
And today, a majority of Americans now live in cities.
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Old 04-19-2015, 10:16 AM
 
Location: Toronto
15,102 posts, read 15,865,611 times
Reputation: 5202
Quote:
Originally Posted by smool View Post
Due to data released from the Greater London Authority (Mayor's Office):

Population Change 1939-2015 - Datasets - London DataStore | London Datastore

London's population hits 8.6m record high - BBC News

London

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/d09e69d4-9...c0.html#slide0

London's population at record high - Feb. 2, 2015

Just saying, it IS official.

Saying that London is in decline??? Seriously? It's booming, adding more people faster than even the Victorian era.


LONDON | Projects & Construction - Page 599 - SkyscraperCity

The London metro basically boomed by nearly 2 million in the decade (the suburbs and exurbs grew by just over a million). It's actually becoming a problem, fuelling a severe housing shortage, baby boom and threatening protected land legislation.
Your data is only using the city population correct? Why I say this is because essentially the very nature of this discussion is that North American cities including NYC and Toronto are more sprawly than European one's including London whose population growth will be centred more within the city than a sprawly metro.. If you used populations growth rates of the Greater Toronto Area from 2001-2011 it would paint a very different picture than just the city of Toronto which you cited in terms of growth.. I say this because I really do think your growth rates are short changing Toronto and NYC as metro regions.. The Greater Toronto Area has grown by 1 million people from 2001-2011!!

The good news is for Toronto, the city is actually growing more within its city proper than at any time before. For example - growth between 2001 and 2006 was mostly focussed in sprawly areas outside the city and the city of Toronto only grew by 22K people.. However, after a change in policy of the Provincial Government - the Places to Grow act - it has refocussed growth within urban areas including the city of Toronto so from 2006-2011 the city actually grew by 111K people a very noticeable difference over two 5 year period. I think between 2011-2016 you'll see more intensification of growth within the city vs the suburbs in Toronto..

Anyway - technically your data is correct for Toronto but as I mentioned, at least historically N.A cities have grown different and more 'sprawly' than Euro one's so naturally Euro city proper growth rates will be higher than N.A one's but when you factor in metro areas in N.A America some of our cities are growing like weeds .. As I said, from 2001-2011 the Greater Toronto area has grown by 1 million - most immigrants have actually settled in outlying cities surrounding Toronto though this is changing after 2006 with more densification and intensification within the city proper now.

Last edited by fusion2; 04-19-2015 at 10:28 AM..
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