SkyscraperCity banner

61 - 80 of 81 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,997 Posts
^^ I'm a little busy to rebuff this idea that cities should be made only considering humans (we could build cities ignoring the needs for electricity systems (artificial and un-human lifts?), or telecommunications (ugly cell antennas?), or sewer or whatever.
What is here so hard to understand? We don"t talk about power grid friendly cities, neither elevator friendly buildings, let alone sewer friendly urban areas. All these things have something in common, they serve the people that are using them and are made for people. The same thing hold for cars. The cars are just tools and means that serve the people and should make their lives easier, merrier, etc. The problem comes when we abandon this basic notion and we come with the concept, that the car is and should be the main subject of any urban planning. This is the utmost nonsence. The subject of urban planning should be the human being, whether he is using this or that to easen his life.

Imagine building city around the idea of a car being the citizen... You would first create system of freeways and than build everything around these freeways in such a manner that every road would be dimensioned with the amount of cars that could use it at the same time at certain point.

Imagine such a city. We start with a dead end road 1x1 around which there are around 1000 garages. On the open end thus it must widen to the 2x2 to accomodate all 1000 cars in peak hour. When already 50 such streets enter this road, it has to widen to 3x3 and so on and on. The central ring road that simply hubs all other roads would habe to be of ridiculous dimensions. Just imagine (this in the people's dimensions, not car's) about why the squeres exists and how big they are and why...

Sure, this was brought to extreme and we could take averages, possible routing habits and routing potentials, etc, into account. But this was brought up to ilustrate that the people and their needs, inside and outside of the cars, are the forming mechanism of any traffic, not the cars themselves.
 

·
Another RussianDatingScam
Joined
·
308 Posts
Of course, ambulances, police, taxis, all run by boat.

Venice is not forbidden to cars: it is impossible for cars to get in simply because there are no roads.
Of course Venice is overpriced and crowded with tourists, but despite that it's wonderful to experience a city without any cars. :)

But didn't any truck or car ever enter Venice?

Around The Piazza San Marco there are some streets which could be used for motortraffic if cars were allowed, but in that case they had to take them there on a boat.

About the Great City of Houston, it was founded in 1836 long before the debute of the automobiles. Still it's downtown is very adapted to motortraffic, it consists of very squarelike streets and freeways crossing the very core of the city.

Did authorities tear down the old parts of the city to free up space to automobiles when that era came?

The wonderful historic City of Boston was founded in 1630, 200 years before Houston, and 73 years before St Petersburg, Russia, but only 80 years after Helsinki, Finland.

BOSTON-Probably the oldest (now existing) City in America?, did they adapt Boston to automobiles or does the old part of town still consist of narrow alleys and streets originally not built for cars but for walking people and horse carts ?
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
50,435 Posts
Discussion Starter #64
The grid system many American cities possess was introduced decades before the introduction of the automobile. It was just considered the best land-usage pattern in the 19th century.

Houston, 1873:
 

·
Lord Kelvin
Joined
·
12,728 Posts
Of course Venice is overpriced and crowded with tourists, but despite that it's wonderful to experience a city without any cars. :)

But didn't any truck or car ever enter Venice?
No, never. The farthest they can go is Piazzale Roma:

http://maps.google.de/maps?q=piazzale+roma+venezia&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-a&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=Piazzale+Roma,+30135+Venedig,+Venetien,+Italien&gl=de&z=16

Around The Piazza San Marco there are some streets which could be used for motortraffic if cars were allowed, but in that case they had to take them there on a boat.
To my knowledge, there aren't.
http://maps.google.de/maps?q=piazzale+roma+venezia&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-a&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=Piazzale+Roma,+30135+Venedig,+Venetien,+Italien&gl=de&ll=45.434413,12.34005&spn=0.004653,0.008256&t=h&z=18

Moreover, a motor road is not just a road in which cars fit. It's a road to go somewhere with a car. Where would you go, by car, in Venice?

The grid system many American cities possess was introduced decades before the introduction of the automobile. It was just considered the best land-usage pattern in the 19th century.
The grid system was introduced by the Romans some 2500 years ago: they called it cardo-decumanus system.
 

·
Another RussianDatingScam
Joined
·
308 Posts
The grid system many American cities possess was introduced decades before the introduction of the automobile. It was just considered the best land-usage pattern in the 19th century.
There is probably a difference between midwest cities and cities along the east-coast.

Boston and Salem MA do not look like this, no such square-pattern, probably because other type of terrain but also because those cities are older.

Also lot of older cities changed in the 19th century, small houses were tore down to make place for grand buildings and memorials of victories in wars. Narrow streets and alleys were replaced with wide avenues, although there were no cars invented yet.

But still automobiles have changed the centre of cities more than any war.
 

·
Another RussianDatingScam
Joined
·
308 Posts
No, never. The farthest they can go is Piazzale Roma:

.
Do you need a permit to go to Piazzale Roma? Is it possible to drop off passengers there, must be crowded place for cars if this is the only spot in Venice where all the cars have to park ?

Also Probably costs a fortune to park there, I´m glad I arrived by train, when I visited Venice in 2008.
 

·
Lord Kelvin
Joined
·
12,728 Posts
Do you need a permit to go to Piazzale Roma? Is it possible to drop off passengers there, must be crowded place for cars if this is the only spot in Venice where all the cars have to park ?

Also Probably costs a fortune to park there, I´m glad I arrived by train, when I visited Venice in 2008.
No special permit, just park and pay your parking :)
It is expensive, though, more or less 30 euro per day.

Piazzale Roma isn't the only spot to park your car, a whole artificial island is devoted to this: it's Tronchetto Island, where a big indoor parking is located (and it's cheaper too, "only" 21 euro per day).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,997 Posts
Many of these wide boulevards were introduced before the automobilism, sure. However, the chariots were used at those times in huge quantities already. These are even bigger than average car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,997 Posts
Lets look at the metamorphosis of one square in Prague (Václavské náměstí).

Middle ages: The New Prague"s Town is just founded (cca 1350) as an extension to the Old Town on the right side of the river Vltava. The square I am talking about is the long line in the right middle, ending with "Koňská brána" meaning the Horse's gate, the square served and was named as a Horse market.


1720:


???:


1890???


????:


???:


1920:


2000:


Future???

 

·
nanar
Joined
·
7,671 Posts
However, I dare to say about Venice: it might be a "lovely" place to visit and spend a weekend, but a hell of a place to live, where everything costs 30% more than in the continent 4km away, where you could easily have to pay € 80 for a boat to deliver you a new fridge or € 200 if you are building a new set of sofas and puffs for you room.
Yes, everybody needs absolutely to change the fridge or new set of sofas many times each year. (I keep mine more than 10 years)
In the opposite, average cost of standard car in Europe (except in Venice) is around 4 or 5000 euros per year.
 

·
Lord Kelvin
Joined
·
12,728 Posts
Yes, everybody needs absolutely to change the fridge or new set of sofas many times each year. (I keep mine more than 10 years)
In the opposite, average cost of standard car in Europe (except in Venice) is around 4 or 5000 euros per year.
Yes, but Venetians substitute cars with private boats... which are costly, too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,942 Posts
I'd say Milton Keynes is both car-friendly and pedestrian/cyclist friendly.

CMK (the CBD) has plenty of parking (some of which is still cheap/free) and pedestrians/cyclists are segregated from fast-flowing traffic by a network of underpasses and footpaths. Pedestrians are protected from rain/wind by a network of pagoda/roof structures along these.

Outside the CBD, each suburb/district is boxed in by fast-flowing grid roads, meaning through traffic is removed. This makes for a more pleasant, lower speed residential areas. Cyclists and pedestrians are catered for by a segregated 'Redway' network of cycleways and footpaths, again avoiding fast traffic. Speed limits for vehicles generally are 40-60-70mph on grid roads. Within the districts 20-30mph is the norm.

Wayfinding is easy with a street pattern based on H (horizontal) and V (vertical) numbers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
798 Posts
I doubt that. The distances in MK are far too great to be pedestrian friendly. And there is just one town centre to walk to.
Yeah, but this thread is about car-friendly cities. :p And Milton Keynes was designed to be one.

What about some of the other British New Towns? Washington? Runcorn? It's known for its busway, but its main roads are all essentially motorways, and at a network density that'd give Wendell Cox a boner. Even Cumbernauld has an elaborate high-speed road system, though that's not its, uh, claim to fame.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
The Twin Cities are very "high" on the list, in 3rd place. This is because Minneapolis and St. Paul have a very high number of freeways... but none of them are particularly huge like Houston or Dallas or Los Angeles.

Many are now being upgraded to 2x3... but many still remain 2x2 and the highest AADT is just under 200,000 on 35W just south of downtown Minneapolis which is now 2x5.
 

·
Feral
Joined
·
621 Posts
Road width is important.

For instance, Philadelphia is organized as a grid, which has historically been considered the most optimal way of laying out a city. So is Houston. But Philadelphia streets have a width of only 50 ft.* (lot line to lot line), with 10 ft. on either side reserved for sidewalks, leaving only 30 ft. of carriageway space. Most streets in the city are thus either one through lane and two parking lanes, or two through lanes and one parking lane. This makes the streets in the city core quite difficult to travel by car, even though the grid network maximizes interconnectivity for all modes of travel. Center City Philadelphia is best walked.**

*Except Market and Broad Streets (100 ft.), and other crosstown boulevards (Spring Garden, Lehigh, Washington, etc.), with varying widths.

**Among other things, this makes light rail (as opposed to trolleys) in Philadelphia impractical.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
101 Posts
I live in Germany, where most of the destroyed cities where rebuilt as car-friendly cities after WW2. They followed the American example.

Today I can tell you in all seriousness that all the ugly cities I know here, happen to be cities that were made car friendly after the war.

All the beautiful cities are those with the old city pattern still intact, and the city-centers being large pedestrain zones with only public transport having entrance to them. To keep the cars away, car-friendliness only exists with a good distance around the city-center.

And in my opinion thats the best way you can do it.

Declare a city center and keep it sacred.
Only permit public transport entrance to it (and the suppliers for the stores of course)
If possible, build a ring around the center, as the closest cars can get, and build parkings along that ring.
Provide park & ride systems outside the ring, so that from every district of the city people can access the center.

>>>And you have the perfect foundation for a great city!


I have so got used to this system, that I won't accept anything less anymore.
Its really irritating for me when I'm out for shopping, want to relax or enjoy some culture, I have cars passing me and have to swallow their noise.
 
61 - 80 of 81 Posts
Top