Classical Music Forum banner

Which style of city development do you prefer?

1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,573 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Low density, single family detached homes in community neighborhoods surrounding a mostly commercial core. Typical cities: Houston, LA, Seattle. Typical transit: automobile

Medium density, low rise condos and townhomes, usually 3-4 stories tall, connected together tracing the streets. Typical cities: European, San Fransisco. Typical transit: Bus, light rail, automobile

High density, high rise condominiums intermingled with commercial skyscrapers in a large urban core. Typical cities: New York, Toronto, Asian. Typical transit: Metro, Taxi, Bus
 
  • Like
Reactions: joen_cph

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,916 Posts
Well, much of San Francisco might be medium density, but everything in the northeastern quadrant of the city is very high density. It's one of the most crowded cities I've ever been to. (And I hope to live there after college!) This reminds me of how I develop cities in Sim City; I usually put the highest density in the center, with lower density around the edges; that's sort of how L.A. is. L.A. is mostly a suburban city with a sizeable downtown core.

Since I am planning on living in a city, I would probably prefer the medium. I don't have much interest in living in the busiest most densely-populated cities or areas of cities.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,573 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes, most cities today bear all three to some extent, and the trend is increasingly higher density to contain sprawl. They do however retain a dominant style. The examples shall be contemplated vaguely.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,242 Posts
I like 'medium density' best from the description, because it matches up more with the type of English cathedral city that I grew up in or have connections with.

Places that are almost entirely modern leave me feeling depressed - I like to feel a connection with history.

A city should also have a river or lake nearby.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,846 Posts
Not sure...my favorite neighborhoods in New York tend to consist of apartment buildings averaging 5-6 stories. This also seems to be pretty standard for the central areas of European cities I'm familiar with. I guess that's somewhere in between your medium and high.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,118 Posts
Density is not Only how many floors the houses have but also how close the houses are to each other therefore can an area with low houses be denser than an area with high rise buildings.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,174 Posts
I currently live in a 'low density' area and I hate it. Everything is too spread out and far away. I hate not being able to walk anywhere. Would much rather live in 'medium density' but I don't think the fiancée would be happy there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,977 Posts
The city I grew up in is the first type—low density, single detached homes—with an ultramodern core of towering skyscrapers (that were primarily used for retail and offices, but some residential). The city planning has tried to move toward clusters of high density, high rise condominiums, particularly in the downtown core and at major hubs along the mass transit routes. There is also a trend to modernize older neighbourhoods by demolishing the single family homes and replacing them with a lot of duplexes, some four-plexes and some pockets of medium density low-rise condos and town homes.

In my opinion, the focus is too much on the towering skyscrapers (high traffic and congestion; noisy) and the duplexes (waste of space, hardly an improvement over single family homes; too spread out to support businesses within walking distance; high cost to implement mass transit over such huge areas). We need much more medium density development that will make the city more walkable and keep the traffic and noise down. This will encourage neighbourhood business and make mass transit feasible. I don't mind the high density in the downtown core and along transportation hubs—but I wouldn't want to live there, due to the pollution and noise, but I wouldn't mind being on a quiet street on the top floor of a three- or four-storey building a ten or fifteen minute stroll away from the action ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
807 Posts
I prefer low density. I don't like high density living. Noisy neighbours, traffic, and lack of green space just makes me depressed. Perhaps I'm crazy, but when I see an apartment building, with dozens of floors of packed humanity, it gives me the shivers. I prefer a country house with plenty of acres, where silence is a welcome commodity. When I was young this feeling was not as pronounced as it is now. I no longer need to feel like I must be in the centre of the city or I'll miss out on something. Let the world pass me by!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,977 Posts
As you can see from what I said, I like the Canadian style of downtown core, with a healthy mix of office, retail and residential towers, the idea being that downtown cores should be vibrant and populated not just during business hours. Our buildings are usually connected on the ground and second, sometimes third and basement levels, with public passages lined with shops, cafés and restaurants. Perhaps this is due to the long harsh winters. In the States, I noticed a lot of segregation between office and retail, so that many of the buildings are not open to the public. As a consequence, there wasn't much to do downtown and the downtown cores were deserted after office closing. Perhaps the perceived greater need for security has prevented the development of mixed use buildings.

Ideally, the rest of the city should be made of European style medium density mixed use residential and entertainment/service developments. When I lived in Germany and in France, I loved having numerous excellent bakers within one or two blocks, medical services nearby, numerous pubs, cafés and restaurants on every block, cinemas and supermarkets, green grocers, specialty shops etc. I was able to do the bulk of my daily shopping by foot without going more than 15 or 20 minutes from home. When I did need or want to go to other parts of the city, it was no problem, as there were usually two or three subway lines stopping at stops only a 5-minute walk from my place with trains arriving every 3 minutes during the day and every 30 minutes after 1 or 2 o'clock in the morning, so I was never stranded and never had to wait long to go anywhere. Even when I wanted to go to nearby cities and towns, the connections between the different local and regional transit systems were uncomplicated... and these, too, were integrated into the national and international rail, ship and air transportations systems. It was uncomplicated to walk from my house to the subway, get off at the train station or airport and arrive in another city, in another country, even, and do the same in reverse to the door of my hotel, without having had to lug my valises more than 20 minutes for the entire door-to-door trip!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
9,050 Posts
I like and am used to low density, large block, house, cars. That's what a family home should feel like.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
10,447 Posts
Although where I have lived since 1982 was already a moderate density city, I much rather prefer a rural setting without all the tall buildings.

The house we bought is in a very quiet neighborhood, off the beaten path (a small development of 25 rather nice homes), so we feel like we are really rural, but shopping is close by when the need arises, but not so close that the lights from their parking lots, and the hubbub of activity they have, has any effect on us.

We can still go into the backyard at night and see lots of stars.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top