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Old July 20th, 2016, 02:34 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Most European cities were different in this aspect, CBDs usually developed outside the historical city centers, if a CBD developed at all. They don't have the typical office towers in the city center like U.S. and Canadian cities have. So there was not a large need to build freeways into the historic core - with a few exceptions.
Depends on what you call a CBD. If a central business district is the place where most of the offices are, the CBD of most European cities has always been in the historical city centers. More peripheral CBDs developed only after 1980, e.g. Canary Wharf and La Defense, but even that partially in response to overflow issues in more central areas.

So even without the highrises of cities in North America or Australasia, I am confident to say that European CBDs developed in the historical city centers. Still, the absence of highrises tells you something about demand for office space. In Europe's large cities, this appears to have been consistently lower than in North American or Australasian big cities. Maybe this was driven by European business being much less concentrated in a few big towns. In that event, the relatively low numbers of offices in European CBDs must have enabled these European cities to deal with the traffic flow into them reasonably well without freeways into the city centers. The combination of suburban rail and dual carriageways with level crossings between suburban areas/beltways and the central areas more or less sufficed for a pretty long time. When the inevitable saturation of Europe's inner cities came, it came late enough to ensure that a freeway was never considered as a politically viable solution.
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Old July 20th, 2016, 10:59 PM   #22
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Don't these wide highways running through city-centers destroy the cities? I don't know of any such city in Europe.
I remembered one (besides Genova): it's Minsk. There're wide boulevards running right through the center. It looks terrible.
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Old July 21st, 2016, 12:57 AM   #23
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Depending on the design, urban freeways enhance the skyline. They just need to be built right. When electric cars replace ICE cars, pollution issues will be moot.
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Old July 21st, 2016, 05:42 AM   #24
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...Atlanta anyone?

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Old July 22nd, 2016, 12:43 PM   #25
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In Amsterdam the A10 south going through the Zuidas Business District will be widened from 8 to 12 lanes (and tunneled).

It is good for the vincinity of this motorway to have it tunneled as it really forms a barrier and not only that, it is consuming a lot of space and all the gloom under these (at night) unsafe tunnels would become worse if doing this above-ground. But even then I think that it is a waste of resources.

By the way, at other points the Netherlands does not really have wide roads at CBD's, however, just outside of urban cores of The Hague, Utrecht and Rotterdam there are some very wide examples of motorways (10+ lanes). And without looking if these plans are actually more efficient than other modes of transport on the long term (20+ years) we still make plans for even more lanes.

The problem: building new (big)/widening roads into the workhouses is a taboo so even if the motorway is wide, once the underlying road network will be the utter limiting factor. There is where The Netherlands must halt, before going fully 60's again.
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Old July 22nd, 2016, 12:51 PM   #26
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That CBD in Amsterdam... They are tunneling just the highway lanes. Not the railway. So it is kinda of a moot project
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Old July 22nd, 2016, 02:02 PM   #27
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A railway is not nearly as intrusive as a highway... I say this as a person who lives next to a commuter railway. The busiest times of operation are when I am out anyway. It's also very useful for my own commute of course.
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Old July 22nd, 2016, 03:29 PM   #28
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A railway is not nearly as intrusive as a highway... I say this as a person who lives next to a commuter railway. The busiest times of operation are when I am out anyway. It's also very useful for my own commute of course.
That is not a regular railway, but a 6-track combined subway+railway ROW with a station right in the middle.

I'm cool with tunneling the highway, I just think using the "let's link both sides of the neighborhood together" in the case of that district in Amsterdam (Zuidas) is a gross misrepresentation of the truth.
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Old July 22nd, 2016, 05:24 PM   #29
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Quote:
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That is not a regular railway, but a 6-track combined subway+railway ROW with a station right in the middle.

I'm cool with tunneling the highway, I just think using the "let's link both sides of the neighborhood together" in the case of that district in Amsterdam (Zuidas) is a gross misrepresentation of the truth.
In my example it is similar. There are commuter S-Bahns, regional, freight and some high speed trains that pass through, with the station in the middle. The station is quite well integrated with the surrounding town, as the access tunnel to the platforms also forms a thoroughfare from the East to the West sides of the town. Add shops and bars inside and at the entrances to the tunnel, with a nearby bus station and plenty of pedestrianized roads, and despite the occasional loud roar of an IC going past, it is a pleasant area. I have rarely seen this solution with a major highway, and I think the limiting factor there is simply the constant noise, and also fumes.
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Old July 27th, 2016, 12:39 AM   #30
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Ventilation is a key issue for urban tunnels.
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Old July 30th, 2016, 02:24 PM   #31
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Another pic of Melbourne, Aus

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Old August 4th, 2016, 12:48 PM   #32
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The M8/M77 multiplex in Glasgow is the widest motorway located adjacent to a CBD in the UK. The mainlines have 14 lanes across four carriageways, and about 18 lanes if you count sliproads as well. It is 1km from the heart of the financial district at Anderston. I think only the M30 in Madrid would rival it in terms of a 'very wide motorway' being so close to a CBD in Europe.
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Old August 4th, 2016, 03:54 PM   #33
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Even if served by metro, tram, train, Paris La Defense has under and overground motorways crossing and sorrounding the district



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Old August 5th, 2016, 08:41 AM   #34
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In Sao Paulo there are some pretty ultra dense CBDs near some serious freeways, which are not that wide because it's on both sides of the river.







The freeway is "enriched" by an adjacent heavy rail line




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Old August 5th, 2016, 10:56 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Verso View Post
I remembered one (besides Genova): it's Minsk. There're wide boulevards running right through the center. It looks terrible.
Actually they look pretty adequate to that city, maybe even not enough wide.
Even in Moscow boulevards are IMO often not so wide as they should be for most populous city in Europe.
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Old August 5th, 2016, 06:41 PM   #36
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I'm talking about the center of Minsk. Wide boulevards don't belong to the very city-center, they just break it in little pieces and destroy it. This is the only part of the center without wide roads crossing it, and it's miniature.
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Old August 5th, 2016, 06:57 PM   #37
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Minsk looks really ugly and uninteresting from touristical point of view. Even the centre is made mostly by commieblocks and wide boulevards, there's almost nothing historical left.
Was it fully bombed during WWII like Berlin, Warsaw or Koenigsberg? Or they simply demolished old buildings to rebuild the city in Soviet style, like in Romania?
The Soviets had really no interests in nice architecture and preservation of historical haritage!
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Old August 5th, 2016, 07:47 PM   #38
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From Wikipedia:
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Minsk was recaptured by Soviet troops on 3 July 1944, during Operation Bagration. The city was the centre of German resistance to the Soviet advance and saw heavy fighting during the first half of 1944. Factories, municipal buildings, power stations, bridges, most roads and 80% of the houses were reduced to rubble. In 1944, Minsk's population was reduced to a mere 50,000. After the Second World War, Minsk was rebuilt, but not reconstructed. The historical centre was replaced in the 1940s and 1950s by Stalinist architecture, which favoured grand buildings, broad avenues and wide squares.
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Old August 5th, 2016, 08:34 PM   #39
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The Soviets had really no interests in nice architecture and preservation of historical haritage!
I can agree with the part about preservation of historical heritage but Soviet architecture is very nice if you ask me (and not only me). Now it is also part of historical heritage and we will soon see will it be preserved or demolished.
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Old August 5th, 2016, 11:11 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Verso View Post
I'm talking about the center of Minsk. Wide boulevards don't belong to the very city-center, they just break it in little pieces and destroy it. This is the only part of the center without wide roads crossing it, and it's miniature.
I was in Minsk last year and we lived in city center right along one of those 6-lane avenues. Trust me, they do not look so broad as from satellite. I wasn't in USA yet but from the pictures of American cities Minsk avenues are pretty similar in width to those in some American downtowns - that is true for Moscow and St. Petersburg also, both have impressive avenues (which also have enormous traffic problems).

As for the city centres - don't expect the same style of old centres in ex Soviet Union like elsewhere in Europe except in St. Petersburg. I've seen some old pictures of Moscow before WWII and I'm sure that Stalin decision about demolishing old wooden huts and cottages was not wrong. Minsk was completely destroyed in war, they've recreated some parts of city center with roads mostly as wide as before:
http://cdn.tvc.ru/pictures/o/158/019.jpg
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