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Old January 12th, 2009, 09:27 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Xusein View Post
The problems with infrastructure is the total opposite around here. While cities like Houston, Atlanta, and Phoenix are ticking time bombs because the services can't keep up with population growth, there's plenty of it here...a lot of the cities here were once bigger at one point and have the infrastructure of their peak populations.

I'm currently in Buffalo, NY which has grown only around 10% (or less) since 1950. I'd say that the highway network is more than adequate.
I noticed that... places like Harrisburg, Buffalo, Rochester, Albany, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Louisville etc. seem to have an oversized road network. On the other hand, in Detroit, everybody moved to the suburbs, resulting in an empty central city, but massive rushhour loads to downtown.
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Old January 12th, 2009, 11:09 PM   #22
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Cincinnati has got quite some problems with congestion. The I-75, going to Dayton, is jammed every rush hour. The freeway network inside the city might be sufficient, but once you leave the city, horror begins (own experience )
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Old January 12th, 2009, 11:13 PM   #23
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LoL we in germany would like to have problems like that. Population is shrinking at 100,000 persons a year, although we have a positive migration balance of 50,000 in 2007. Severe is the situation in rural areas in eastern germany. Take Eisenhüttenstadt, Brandenburg for example. It's one of the fastest shrinking cities in Germany and has halved since 1990. Birth rate is just at 1.37 children per woman compared to USA with 2.1 or Israel with 2.8. Very soon, when the population will shrink faster the Autobahn-network will be to big for us. Big migration waves are impossible to us as we don't have the melting pot tradition like the USA. There is no experience how large-scale migration will have effects on ethnically homogenic countries like Germany.

We also hadn't had a migration wave in this decade, like Spain, Italy or the UK. The positive thing although is tht we don't have an eploding unemployment rate like Spain.

Germany could feed over 100 million people so we have space for 18 million people here, but they aren't born. What does the US and Israel right, and what do we wrong?
For America, I think its due to strong Latin immigration(mostly from Mexico) and high birth from latinos and blacks plus religious conservatives. Take away those factors, and I think the birth rate would be comparable to some European countries.
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Old January 12th, 2009, 11:34 PM   #24
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The north east of the US needs a good family policy to raise birth rates. birt rate is the lowest there in the USA:
For the time being (may change in the future as aging starts), stopping the migration southward should be more of a problem to tackle than raising the birth rate.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 12:02 AM   #25
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For the time being (may change in the future as aging starts), stopping the migration southward should be more of a problem to tackle than raising the birth rate.
But isn't the north east also the richest region in the USA by GDP/inh.?
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Old January 13th, 2009, 12:22 AM   #26
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For America, I think its due to strong Latin immigration(mostly from Mexico) and high birth from latinos and blacks plus religious conservatives. Take away those factors, and I think the birth rate would be comparable to some European countries.
Exactly. Most European countries aren't seeing a decrease either due to high immigration.

Anyway, the focus has to clearly be on public transportation -- subways, tram systems, commuter trains, regional high speed trains, etc. Roads are necessary and I like them certainly, but getting a situation like Los Angeles where roads are everywhere you go, you can't get far without a car, horrible air quality, etc. is unsustainable and unwise.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 12:36 AM   #27
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Canada, like most western nations, is facing a demographic time bomb in the not too distant future. A low birth rate has meant that almost all population growth in Canada today comes from immigration. As the birth rate continues to fall, Canada needs the level of immigration in has now to ensure de-population doesn't occur and that enough people of working age exist to support an aging population which is quickly reaching an age where they will no longer work.
That's why several provinces (Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Newfoundland / Labrador, Yukon, etc.) and a territory are promoting their jurisdictions to enter Canada quickly by their nominee programs. The Northwest Territories, on the other hand, is also planning to have a nominne program to boost population.
Saskatchewan is in a "demographic" crisis. The crisis was so chronic that they need 11,000 people to move in every year with no one leaving the province, despite having a history (2 decades) of population decline. Thanks to the "Saskaboom", Saskatchewan is starting to get its population back from Alberta. Before the oil fields were discovered, Saskatchewan was the 3rd most populous province in Canada, just after Ontario and Quebec, and well ahead of Alberta. That's why Saskatchewan needs to have at least 2,000,000 people in 10 years.
Same to Newfoundland, which is in a demographic decline. But thanks to the discovered offshore oil platforms, Newfoundland is starting to go back up, getting over the critical line of 500,000.

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Canada is also one of the few nations where a significantly larger population would be beneficial to the country. We have the largest coastline in the world and occupy the 2nd largest land mass. It's a tremendous financial strain on a population of only 33 million to maintain roads, rail, the power grid, shipping, and defense.
The Northwest Passage, which splits Nunavut into two parts, is a critical flashpoint of Canadian Arctic Sovereignty. Nunavut, which composes of over 2/3 of the passage, only has a population of 31,000, and majority of them are far from the passage itself. The largest communities on the passage are Cambridge Bay, and Pond Inlet; both with only 1,500 people each. To properly manage the passage, Nunavut and the NWT need larger population of communities. Several Arctic ports (Tuktoyaktuk, NWT; Bathurst Inlet, NU; Iqaluit, NU) and small craft harbours (7?+ Nunavut communities) are being proposed, yet haven't heard a single word about those.
Majority of people in Canada are hugging the US border. The only large Canadian jurisdiction that is able to spread well is Alberta. It has 2 cities over 50,000 (Grande Prairie and Fort Mac) that lie north of the centre (54deg30minN) of the province.
All territories north of 60 need a lot more people. Nunavut's effort to boom is still lacking, since its "boom" is so small scale when compared to international level.
Even north of 60, Yukon and NWT population centres are hugging BC ang Alberta's borders, respectively.

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Most nations have too many people, Canada would be more efficient and better able to reach its potential with a substantially larger population. There is no population explosion problem in Canada, but an issue of managing the growth we have. New comers should be encouraged to move to areas beyond the big 3: Toronto, Vancouver, and Montreal.
MTV for short. lawl!

Edit: Consider Alaska. It has population of 600,000. While its neigbours: Yukon (31,000); Northwest Territories (43,000); and Nunavut (31,000). are too small to be compared. Canada needs to step up to spread out of MTV, as these three metro areas are seeing congestion, while there are no high-speed rails under construction (at least they're talking about it - hoping for a maglev... ) .

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We're starting to see this happen as immigrants start to discover and settle in places like Calgary, Winnipeg, Halifax, and the even our north. People will still gravitate to southern Ontario, but it will no longer be at the expense of farm land. If they can't afford that dream home here, it will always be possible in most of the rest of the country. Besides, there's been a huge resurgence of interest in living downtown. Many people are craving the convenience and excitement of downtown living.
Not mentioning the future large cities of Saskatoon and Regina. The west is booming all over. Manitoba is waiting to boom in a very large scale like her 3 neighbours to the west.

Edit: Saskatoon needs at least 500,000 people in order for its population to become stable. Regina is also catching up with around 400,000 to 450,000 people needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by isaidso View Post
No large city can remain cheap forever. Toronto is still a bargain compared to Los Angeles.
True.

Last edited by girlicious_likeme; January 13th, 2009 at 12:42 AM.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 12:53 AM   #28
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Germany could feed over 100 million people so we have space for 18 million people here, but they aren't born. What does the US and Israel right, and what do we wrong?
In the US, most of the population growth is coming from Latino and black families.

In Israel most of the population growth is coming from the Palestinian families.

Same thing goes for UK and France, the mean reason they have a stable population growth is due to minority population just like US and Israel.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 01:24 AM   #29
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But isn't the north east also the richest region in the USA by GDP/inh.?
It is. But it also is the most expensive area as well, with low job growth. And a large portion of the Northeast has depressing weather for half the year.

For some, the idea of moving south where the jobs are more plentiful (well, not really anymore) and the weather is nicer is worth it. Not to me, but to others. Population growth is overrated anyway, and it's already too crowded in the BosWash corridor already, almost 50 million people. Let's see how much the Sunbelt trumpets it in a few years when they have to spend prodigious amounts of money on updating the services for their booming populations. The governments here will get to pay less to update our infrastructure.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 01:31 AM   #30
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For America, I think its due to strong Latin immigration(mostly from Mexico) and high birth from latinos and blacks plus religious conservatives. Take away those factors, and I think the birth rate would be comparable to some European countries.
I suppose that is why a large portion of the Northeast (like Northern New England) has birth rates so low. None of those are around there...almost no racial minorities (VT, NH, and ME are among the Whitest states in the nation), and religious conservatives are low as well.

Vermont is below 1.70 children per woman, and the population there grew by only 500 people last year.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 05:52 AM   #31
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I personally wish birth rate in this country will go do down too. Too many annoying kids and parents to deal with.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 02:24 PM   #32
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LoL we in germany would like to have problems like that. Population is shrinking at 100,000 persons a year, although we have a positive migration balance of 50,000 in 2007. Severe is the situation in rural areas in eastern germany. Take Eisenhüttenstadt, Brandenburg for example. It's one of the fastest shrinking cities in Germany and has halved since 1990. Birth rate is just at 1.37 children per woman compared to USA with 2.1 or Israel with 2.8. Very soon, when the population will shrink faster the Autobahn-network will be to big for us. Big migration waves are impossible to us as we don't have the melting pot tradition like the USA. There is no experience how large-scale migration will have effects on ethnically homogenic countries like Germany.

We also hadn't had a migration wave in this decade, like Spain, Italy or the UK. The positive thing although is tht we don't have an eploding unemployment rate like Spain.

Germany could feed over 100 million people so we have space for 18 million people here, but they aren't born. What does the US and Israel right, and what do we wrong?
I'd sooner move to Germany than to the US.
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Old January 13th, 2009, 08:14 PM   #33
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I suppose that is why a large portion of the Northeast (like Northern New England) has birth rates so low. None of those are around there...almost no racial minorities (VT, NH, and ME are among the Whitest states in the nation), and religious conservatives are low as well.

Vermont is below 1.70 children per woman, and the population there grew by only 500 people last year.
All but one county in Germany is below 1.7. 1.7 is the number tackeled by our Government, we try to reach it until 2020. Maybe this will move some countys in the growth zone above 2.1 children per woman.

The situation is only worse in eastern Europe and eastern Asia.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 01:28 AM   #34
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I suppose the big question about how to handle is to look at the carrying capacity of any given region with scarce energy supply. After all many areas in the world we inhabit now are only sustainable with a steady supply of cheap energy. If you take cheap energy supply out of the equation then areas like the US and Canadian prairies, cities like Phoenix and Las Vegas become unsustainable and will have to shrink (or in some cases virtually vanish) to reach a situation where they can continue to support any kind of population. Denver, Salt Lake, Calgary, etc,etc can not function at their present sizes without an abundant energy supply.

Generally suburban sprawl is a living arrangement with no future. It's a living arrangement designed on the premise of abundant and cheap energy. If energy becomes expensive and scarce then the whole commute, suburban mall, Wal-Mart, supermarket become unsustainable rendering suburbs economic badlands.

Which ever course things take it is clear that the American dream will become negotiable in the coming decades.

This counts for all countries with high levels of suburban sprawl like Australia for instance.

When cheap energy becomes scarce we will find ourselves having to re-evaluate the carrying capacity of our cities and regions. In most cases that will mean far less people.



My future urban mix. High and middle density mixes. Street car suburbs and high frequency metro/ urban rail. Intensive horticulture in and immediately around population centres.

As for cars. I'm not sure as to how big a role they can play in the future. Electric cars are far inferior for performance and are expensive, hydrogen requires very expensive components and depending how it's generated could require a whole new national distribution infrastructure. Plug ins? How much power can the grid supply?

It will be interesting to see.

More importantly, how can we produce food and goods and transport them in an expensive energy economy? It would seem that in any case we are headed for a more compact world in the way we live, work and trade.

Last edited by KIWIKAAS; January 14th, 2009 at 01:36 AM.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 05:29 PM   #35
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http://www.worldchanging.com/archives/009304.html

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Choosing What Our Cities Will Look Like in a World Without Oil


As we draw nearer to reaching the point of Peak Oil, it benefits us to imagine what our cities will look like in a world without oil. Does this conjure up images of cities turned into urban farms just to produce enough food for us all? Do we devote all our energy to growing, bartering and trading the food we grow? Or will the city become divided, with the wealthy moving to the center while higher costs of living force lower-income families to the outer-ring suburbs, where access to goods, services and transport will be limited?

End Agglomeration Diseconomies
The freeway is a failed technology. Freeways don’t actually ultimately help people get where they want to go any faster; they simply scatter people and economies. Freeways fail as public spaces; as infrastructure, they are dinosaurs. Their impact on cities is not good for economics or people. So we should stop building them. We should instead organize and advocate for rail systems so we can reclaim and rehabilitate our open spaces. Car-dependent cities can begin to reclaim freeways by investing in rail transit and building up local economies around station hubs.

Density, Walkability and Affordable Housing
High quality, high rise developments in the city will increase walkability, and decrease the number of trips taken by car. These developments will function best if developers work in partnership with land use planners. To end the division and disagreements that high density development creates, we have to require all developments to allot 15 percent of space to social housing, and require 5 percent of the value of a development to go toward social infrastructure, like landscaped open-to-the-public space, public art, community centers, schools, arts facilities.

Complete Streets, Smart Grids
Cars won’t go away completely, even though the oil we currently use to power them will. The cars of the future will run on alternatively produced electricity. We can link the extra energy produced from solar and wind production systems to the batteries in our cars with Smart Grids. These energy linking systems help buildings and transportation power each other. (Read more about Smart Grids on Worldchanging here and here.)

Eco-villages colonizing the fringe
Build eco-villages on the outskirts of the urban ring. Built with their own water, power and sewage systems, we can turn the crumbling suburbs into self sustaining eco-communities of the future.
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Old January 14th, 2009, 05:37 PM   #36
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Whose gonna pay for all those hot rail connections when the tax on car fuel diminishes?

This looks like some anti-freeway club. Like I have said before, the car will always be the most efficient way of travel for most connections, even with traffic jams. So Freeways do not become obsolete at all, unless we all start flying. It's just a matter of time before we can actually drive cars that do not run on fossil fuels anymore. Mankind could split the atom, you don't think they can find a solution for personal transportation? Cars like the Toyota Prius are just a transformation into a full-electric carstock. Seriously, this looks like some doomsday talk we've seen from the late 1960's like the Sierra Club, Club of Rome etc. Remember acid rain? Who talks about that now?
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Old January 14th, 2009, 09:07 PM   #37
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It will be interesting how things develop in the coming few years. Whether we will still be driving around en masse depends on many factors and not just fossil fuel free propulsion for cars. Considering we may already have reached peak oil production or that this will occur within a few years, the recent electric car developments aren't very encouraging.
If an affordible, high performance, long range alternative is developed we still have to have a population with desposable wealth to buy the things. Whether we are driving around in electric cars and still getting stuck in traffic will be dependant on whether we can convert the economy in general over to fossil fuel free propulsion (think agriculture, construction/ maintainance, trucks, ships, plains etc). This too has to be done swiftly because if the fossil fuel based world economy founders then the chances of conversion become ever lower.
I'm not saying it won't happen (a mass transition) but the indicators aren't pointing up at the moment.
The Club of Rome's ''Limits to Growth'' has come back to the fore. A recent CSIRO study of the last 30 years confirmed that the trends stated in the book back in 1970 were pretty much on track and that the ''business as usual'' growth model was heading for a train wreck sometime this century (most likely within a few decades) should we not take monumental steps to curb pollution, industrial agriculture, deforestation and population growth.

I agree with you that car travel is the most efficient trvel mode for most trips. I use my car regularly and my favourite spots can only be reached by car (or a very, very long bike ride or even longer walk). I'm not sitting waiting rubbing my hands for the glory days of the middle ages to return . Things are just fine the way they are but unfortunately for myself and the rest of us we may not be able to replicate our oil driven lifestyles with clean energy alternatives.
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Old January 16th, 2009, 02:04 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Whose gonna pay for all those hot rail connections when the tax on car fuel diminishes?

This looks like some anti-freeway club. Like I have said before, the car will always be the most efficient way of travel for most connections, even with traffic jams. So Freeways do not become obsolete at all, unless we all start flying. It's just a matter of time before we can actually drive cars that do not run on fossil fuels anymore. Mankind could split the atom, you don't think they can find a solution for personal transportation? Cars like the Toyota Prius are just a transformation into a full-electric carstock. Seriously, this looks like some doomsday talk we've seen from the late 1960's like the Sierra Club, Club of Rome etc. Remember acid rain? Who talks about that now?
I think you are missing the point. The point is not to abolish the car, but to increase the density of the cities rather than building more far-way suburbs. This has the benefit of reducing area waste, and to reduce both the time and energy used on commuting. Densification rathern than suburban sprawl also has social benefits. Of course, this is only possible through strict planning, but this is the direction we are already going in many places of the world.

BTW, regarding population growth, it's not exactly a huge problem anywhere in Europe, it has after all lower growth than all other continents. However, the largest growth is actually in Northern Europe (Iceland and Norway in particular) as well as some coastal countries like Ireland and Malta. Southern Europe has much lower birth rates and hence lower population growth, although Spain/Portugal is somewhat better than Italy, for instance.


EDIT: OK, I checked the Eurostat pop projections, and this is the projected growth between 2010 and 2060:
Bulgaria -27 %
Latvia -25 %
Lithuania -24 %
Romania -21 %
Poland -18 %
Slovakia -16 %
Estonia -15 %
Germany -14 %
Hungary -13 %
Slovenia -13 %
Czech Republic -8 %
Malta -2 %
Greece -2 %
Italy -1 %
Netherlands 1 %
Finland 1 %
EU (27 countries) 1 %
Portugal 5 %
Denmark 7 %
Austria 8 %
Spain 11 %
Belgium 14 %
France 15 %
Sweden 17 %
Switzerland 19 %
United Kingdom 24 %
Norway 25 %
Ireland 46 %
Luxembourg 48 %
Cyprus 61 %


Spain will actually have a decent growth according to these projections, and the growth will be much higher in the capital area I guess. However, the trend is clear, except the Cyprus anamoly, Western/Northern Europe has the highest growth, Eastern Europe is in trouble, Southern Europe is mostly rather stagnant. Iceland was not included in the statistics, but I believe they are in the top 3 somewhere. Actually, the population growth of Norway in 2007 was a whopping 1.2 %, and if that is to continue, Norway will have 8.9 M in 2060, an increase of 86 %! Iceland had even higher population growth, but may experience emigration to US and other Nordic countries in the short run now due to their financial problems,
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Old September 4th, 2009, 02:38 AM   #39
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Modern life without a car is an utopia, drawn mainly by übber-city well-off or upscale dwellers who can afford:

1. Plenty of free time to do groceries every other day.
2. Are single and leave alone most of the time.
3. Have huge external social life that keeps them out of house.

Otherwhise, the idea of everyone packing into condos and walking everywhere is just not feasible. Transit advocates would rather focus on improving transportation patterns for home-office-home commute and not focusing on "banning the car" like campaigns.

This kind of "community life" where you'd meet same people all around (in the grocery, in the community garden, in the neighbor's dog park, in the bus, in the local bank and in the local farmer's market) annoys me a lot. I like to be able to pick people I interact with and diversify my environments. It would suck a hundred percent if I had to meet guys from my workplace (and mostly them) when I'm in on a supermarket or just walking around. It's a very communist-utopic project in the sense of depriving individuals of hard-earn rights to choose where to live, where to work etc. for a comunal living.

If those über-city dwellers are feeling alone, they should get a boyfriend or gilrfriend, and not try to social engineer our citys according to their creed. I now live bymyself, alone etc., but I'd never find appealing the ideia of raising my future children in, say, East Village, Manhattan, in a small apartment from where they would have to go out to to everything they want (play, meet friends, pet the dog etc.).
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Old September 4th, 2009, 03:32 AM   #40
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The only long term solution is to lower the population. They should take initiative in those way overpopulated countries, like Netherlands and Belgium.
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