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Thread: Dangerous weather and architecture

  1. #26
    Cyburbian
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    A good way to provide good traditional housing:
    http://youtu.be/iBOvsVntJ5c
    You can hear about good affordable housing in the first part of the video.

  2. #27
    Cyburbian Linda_D's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    ColoGI, I'm not recommending those types of housing, I don't know where you got that from.
    There are much better ways, traditional urbanism shows that the poor are able to have a quality place to live, even right next to the rich. We know better than to isolate the poor like in modernist housing projects.

    Modernist housing projects and mobile homes aren't the only places the poor can live in. There are good, (and better) traditional alternatives...
    The problem with your proposal for banning mobile homes is that the people who live in them do so generally because they don't want to live in an urban setting. They prefer to live in an exurban or rural area, even if they're only a few feet from their neighbors in a trailer park. Other people put their mobiles on their own land out in the country. You don't find many mobile homes or mobile home parks in cities or even in fairly close suburbs. If these people wanted urban living, they'd move to "the city" (or in some cases, overgrown small town) where they would probably have better job prospects, too.

    A much more sensible approach anywhere else tornadoes are common is to encourage building underground storm shelters on private property and requiring them for mobile home parks and apartmet complexes. Maybe underground shelters or safe rooms become the norm for all new builds/substantial remodels in the Midwest just like meeting earthquake or hurricane standards are required in California or Florida.

  3. #28
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    ColoGI, I'm not recommending those types of housing, I don't know where you got that from.
    Then the very next sentence is:

    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    There are much better ways, traditional urbanism shows that the poor are able to have a quality place to live, even right next to the rich.
    Where'd I get that from...where'd I get that from...I wonder...I wonnnnnderrrrrrr...

    Nope. Can't figure it out. A mystery.

  4. #29
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by ColoGI View post
    Then the very next sentence is:



    Where'd I get that from...where'd I get that from...I wonder...I wonnnnnderrrrrrr...

    Nope. Can't figure it out. A mystery.
    Are you really taking the time to read my posts? Or are you just reading into them what you want to? I'm sorry if I'm causing some misunderstanding...
    If you watch the video I posted above, you'll see that I'm saying there are much better ways of providing affordable housing for the poor.

    I never, ever said that we should build Soviet-Era housing, that is not traditional, neither are mobile homes or modernist housing projects.

    Also, Linda_D, the problem is that many mobile home parks are located in flood plains (because it's cheap land), so underground storm shelters are out of the question in those locations.

    Mobile homes might be in exurban/rural areas, but they are still usually 20-30ft from one another, putting them in a semi-urban state/density. Not to mention that most mobile home parks have no (or virtually no) real open space, other than their tiny yards. So they may be sitting in a rural area, they are still essentially "urban". If things were done in a more traditional manner, we would be building small villages in the country rather than mobile home parks or subdivisions. This allows for 100-500 people to live in the country, and in a small-town setting; yet still retain a good level of self-sustainability and some good sturdiness to their buildings. As can be mentioned, this is how we used to do it. If you look at most American cities that were founded prior to the 20th Century, you will see that they all were forming as small, urban villages. This allows for people to live in the country, yet also in a quiet "urban" area. It also offers opportunity for farmers, who can live outside the city in the rural areas, and allows them to bring their goods into town for sale. Mobile homes serve just as that, homes, and they serve no other purpose. The people that live there have to go somewhere else for work. It is an area that is just one, single use, and yet we know that denser areas have to be multi-use, and that it is a bad thing to separate "zones" and uses.
    We also seem to treat the country and farmland like it's area for development, or area to just "squat" on. Yet it ought to be used for a purpose, mainly for farming. Some of it also has to be naturally preserved and allowed to grow naturally. Cities are the places for development, not the countryside.

    People also seem to be afraid of urban areas and seem to associate them with NYC, Chicago and Los Angeles. Yet I would argue that those situations are also un-traditional, and urban areas ought to be smaller, with buildings reaching only about 4-5 stories, and with populations reaching only about 100,000-150,000 people (and areas of about 1.5-2 square miles maximum).
    Cities like this aren't going to be quite the blemish that some in the country think of cities as being. (if they are built traditionally) That doesn't mean people in the country should want to be in the city, their choice is to live in the country. But it just means that the cities should work in tandem and cooperation with the farming communities around them, the cities shouldn't be consuming them like a wildfire.
    Last edited by TradArch12; 30 May 2011 at 2:07 PM.

  5. #30
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    If you watch the video I posted above, you'll see that I'm saying there are much better ways of providing affordable housing for the poor.
    "Better" for whom?

  6. #31
    Cyburbian WSU MUP Student's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    Think about it, imagine (for example), if Joplin were built like a traditional city would have been (ignoring the last century of city-building). Chances are that the buildings would have been much more sturdy, and the city would have been dense enough that if you look at the tornado's path, it would have missed the developed area.

    Our current state of development means we are spread out to about 1,500 people per square mile. For a metro area the size of Kansas City (2 million), that is 1,225 square miles of developed area. Yet if it were built entirely by traditional methods of city-building, only about 40-50 square miles would be developed in the area. (and they would be spread-out towns/villages, not contiguous)
    Conversely, what if Joplin were built in a much more dense manner and the tornado's path had hit right in an area with many multi family buildings or single family homes on small lots? If we think 142 deaths is a lot, the possibility of 1,000 deaths from a Tornado would be beyond catastrophic. The same situation could already occur in much more dense places like Oklahoma City, Kansas City, Omaha, or Tulsa.

    Outright banning certain types of construction or dictating that folks must live in certain areas just does not seem feasible especially as a method of mitigating against the exceedingly slim chance of death and destruction from a natural disaster. I stand by my original suggestion that ending subsidies, tax credits, and federal backing of mortgages for homes and subsidies for insurance on certain types of construction in certain areas would probably be more palatable and feasible. This way, the government wouldn't be telling you what you can or cannot do, they are just not going to make it easier for you to do it.
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  7. #32
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by WSU MUP Student View post
    Conversely, what if Joplin were built in a much more dense manner and the tornado's path had hit right in an area with many multi family buildings or single family homes on small lots? If we think 142 deaths is a lot, the possibility of 1,000 deaths from a Tornado would be beyond catastrophic. The same situation could already occur in much more dense places like Oklahoma City, Kansas City, Omaha, or Tulsa.

    Outright banning certain types of construction or dictating that folks must live in certain areas just does not seem feasible especially as a method of mitigating against the exceedingly slim chance of death and destruction from a natural disaster. I stand by my original suggestion that ending subsidies, tax credits, and federal backing of mortgages for homes and subsidies for insurance on certain types of construction in certain areas would probably be more palatable and feasible. This way, the government wouldn't be telling you what you can or cannot do, they are just not going to make it easier for you to do it.
    The thing is, those buildings wouldn't be built out of wood, but concrete and masonry (like brick). So they would be much more solid. We need to quit assuming that an F5 destroys EVERYTHING. As we see from photographs, there are buildings that took direct hits from the F5, and yet remained standing.

    ColoGI, it's better for everyone, not just the poor. It's safer for the poor, and it integrates them with the medium and upper class. Haven't you read about New Urbanism, Form Based Code and Smart Growth?

    I think we also need to quit acting like banning certain things is "oppressive" or a violation of "freedoms". We can't let humans do whatever they want whenever they want and then assume that they are "free" and that it is "good". Humans are terrible at doing what is right and good, and we are extremely good at ruining our environment and making ourselves unhappy. We need to be doing what is best for everyone, not just those that want to make a quick buck. We're going to end up destroying ourselves the way we are going. Yet I guess it's "worth it" if we retain our "freedoms" to do whatever we want... One definition of insanity is "extreme foolishness or irrationality"; well I argue that our current behavior is insanity.

  8. #33
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    ColoGI, it's better for everyone, not just the poor. It's safer for the poor, and it integrates them with the medium and upper class. Haven't you read about New Urbanism, Form Based Code and Smart Growth?
    Who says it is better? You? The downtrodden people you are improving via your ideas, do they want this or are you simply stating it, hoping it is true and the poor follow along?

  9. #34
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    I think we also need to quit acting like banning certain things is "oppressive" or a violation of "freedoms". We can't let humans do whatever they want whenever they want and then assume that they are "free" and that it is "good".
    What planners want and what is acceptable to the public are two entirely different things. Planners have to work within the constraints set by the public and elected officials.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally posted by Blide View post
    What planners want and what is acceptable to the public are two entirely different things. Planners have to work within the constraints set by the public and elected officials.
    That is the situation where Planners, Advocates and Architects need to educate the Public, and get the elected officials to change their minds.

    ColoGI, we know it's better based on history and first-hand accounts. There are other places in the world that are still traditionally designed and planned. The last 100 years has been a disaster in the architecture and planning world. 100 years of deviation isn't going to change thousands of years of history. For thousands of years humans designed and built cities a certain way because it works and because it's good. We just seem to think that we know better than our ancestors...

    Thankfully many of the planning schools have woken up and are teaching their students traditional planning. Now we just need to get the architecture schools to do the same, but as history has shown, as architects, we are especially stubborn and slow to adapt/change.

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    That is the situation where Planners, Advocates and Architects need to educate the Public, and get the elected officials to change their minds.
    There in lies the problem though. You have to be able to convince people that the status quo is no longer acceptable. Often times people are perfectly happy with the way things are and getting them to change is rather difficult. What you're proposing would be an emotional issue where simply educating is often not sufficient. Then as ColoGI alluded to, what the planner wants may not always be the best course of action.

  12. #37
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    TradArch12,

    Your views here are clouded by a blind adherence to a rigid adherence to a certain planning archetype. Among other things, this has led you to interpret the history of urbanization in a particular way, and to assume that there is no value to practices such as balloon frame construction, mobile/modular housing, suburban development, etc. Nothing is so clearly black and white, which is what we have been trying to communicate to you. Ideas such as banning balloon frame construction might seem to solve one problem (a "problem" many do not believe exists) but fail to recognize an entirely different, and potentially more significant set of problems created by the "solution".
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  13. #38
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by Blide View post
    There in lies the problem though. You have to be able to convince people that the status quo is no longer acceptable. Often times people are perfectly happy with the way things are and getting them to change is rather difficult. What you're proposing would be an emotional issue where simply educating is often not sufficient. Then as ColoGI alluded to, what the planner wants may not always be the best course of action.
    It is most definitely the best course of action. If someone is a smoker, is it easy to convince them to stop smoking? No, but once they do stop, isn't it better for their health? Or if someone is an alcoholic, isn't it hard to convince them to stop? Yet once they stop, isn't it better for them? Or if someone is ill, is it always easy to convince them to go to the hospital? Yet if you convince them, isn't it better for them?

    Our society is sick and delusional, and we need to convince people to change. Yes, it's the "status quo" now, but it's only been the status quo for 50 to 60 years. There are still people alive that remember when things were different. We have young people that are growing up and rejecting everything previous generations (That is, the 60s, and the Baby Boomers) gave them, we need to take advantage of that and allow ourselves to start combining our new technologies with the old, traditional, pre-1950s methods of city building.

    There was a lecture at Notre Dame where they pointed out that the traditional building always outperforms our modern sustainable buildings that use technology to be sustainable. If we managed to combine the traditional with the technology, we will reach a level of sustainability and environmentalism that our current model couldn't even dream of.

    Going back to the original topic. Yes, it would be "painful" for people to leave behind the balloon-framed house and the mobile home. Yet in the long run, it's going to be better. Yes, right now it's going to be painful, and the withdrawal is going to be tough. But we have to think in terms of decades and not months/years. While leaving those behind will be tougher at first, in the long run, it's going to be much, much safer. Load-bearing walls can withstand hurricanes and tornados, wood-framed houses cannot.

    Quote Originally posted by Cardinal View post
    TradArch12,

    Your views here are clouded by a blind adherence to a rigid adherence to a certain planning archetype. Among other things, this has led you to interpret the history of urbanization in a particular way, and to assume that there is no value to practices such as balloon frame construction, mobile/modular housing, suburban development, etc. Nothing is so clearly black and white, which is what we have been trying to communicate to you. Ideas such as banning balloon frame construction might seem to solve one problem (a "problem" many do not believe exists) but fail to recognize an entirely different, and potentially more significant set of problems created by the "solution".
    Actually I'm not a "blind" adherent to New Urbanism, I know the alternatives. I wasn't always a "New Urbanist" and I wasn't always a "Traditionalist". But based on solid facts, and based on history, I know it is a much better alternative.
    I realize people love the current status quo (to a degree), and I realize people don't know the problems it causes. Yet, there is something better out there.

    We are going to destroy ourselves if we continue down the same path. We will be ruined economically, environmentally, culturally, socially, physically etc...

    People today are literally afraid of thinking things are "black and white" and people are convinced there is no such thing as objective truth. Yet for generations upon generations, humans recognized there is something as the "truth". We have convinced ourselves otherwise and it's been to our disadvantage.

    I'm convinced that we as traditionalists will win, but if we don't win, then the world will be worse off. We might be the minority right now, but looking back at history, the vast majority and history of human civilization stands on our side.

    Being traditional isn't a "reversion" or "going back". If it was such a thing, then human civilization has been held back for tens, if not hundreds of thousands of years.

    If there is such a thing as objective truth, it inevitably means someone is wrong. People are too unwilling to stand up for their personal beliefs these days. I don't believe "sprawl" and "suburbanization" is "evil", but I do believe it is wrong and is going to send our society & culture into the dirt.
    Last edited by Gedunker; 31 May 2011 at 2:22 PM. Reason: seq. replies

  14. #39
    Cyburbian Linda_D's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    Also, Linda_D, the problem is that many mobile home parks are located in flood plains (because it's cheap land), so underground storm shelters are out of the question in those locations.
    The solution is for municipalities to disallow further new development in flood plains, especially residential development, or discourage it without mitigation measures. That means that existing trailer parks in flood plains cannot expand -- and new ones can't be built there but it also means the same for any other kind of development in flood plains. You are constantly coming with excuses to defend an idea that is really indefensible anywhere that purports to support democratic values in order to force people to live the way that you think they should live.

    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    Mobile homes might be in exurban/rural areas, but they are still usually 20-30ft from one another, putting them in a semi-urban state/density. Not to mention that most mobile home parks have no (or virtually no) real open space, other than their tiny yards. So they may be sitting in a rural area, they are still essentially "urban". If things were done in a more traditional manner, we would be building small villages in the country rather than mobile home parks or subdivisions. This allows for 100-500 people to live in the country, and in a small-town setting; yet still retain a good level of self-sustainability and some good sturdiness to their buildings. As can be mentioned, this is how we used to do it. If you look at most American cities that were founded prior to the 20th Century, you will see that they all were forming as small, urban villages. This allows for people to live in the country, yet also in a quiet "urban" area. It also offers opportunity for farmers, who can live outside the city in the rural areas, and allows them to bring their goods into town for sale. Mobile homes serve just as that, homes, and they serve no other purpose. The people that live there have to go somewhere else for work. It is an area that is just one, single use, and yet we know that denser areas have to be multi-use, and that it is a bad thing to separate "zones" and uses.
    We also seem to treat the country and farmland like it's area for development, or area to just "squat" on. Yet it ought to be used for a purpose, mainly for farming. Some of it also has to be naturally preserved and allowed to grow naturally. Cities are the places for development, not the countryside.
    Have you ever been "out in the country"???? You think that 100-500 people can form some magical little village where they can work, educate their kids, support cultural institutions, medical facilities, etc surrounded by prosperous organic farms that sell all their products at food coops and farmers markets??? You need a serious reality check. Most rural areas are dotted with tiny towns that are struggling to survive.

    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    People also seem to be afraid of urban areas and seem to associate them with NYC, Chicago and Los Angeles. Yet I would argue that those situations are also un-traditional, and urban areas ought to be smaller, with buildings reaching only about 4-5 stories, and with populations reaching only about 100,000-150,000 people (and areas of about 1.5-2 square miles maximum).
    Cities like this aren't going to be quite the blemish that some in the country think of cities as being. (if they are built traditionally) That doesn't mean people in the country should want to be in the city, their choice is to live in the country. But it just means that the cities should work in tandem and cooperation with the farming communities around them, the cities shouldn't be consuming them like a wildfire.
    I live in a city of 30,000 people in a county that is 1200 square miles and has all of 130,000 souls in it because I like living in an overgrown small town where it's hard to be a stranger unless you work at it. The next county east has about 75,000 people in about the same area with its largest city having around 15,000 people. This is in New York State. Most of Pennsylvania is even more sparsely populated. Get out in the Plains or the Rockies and the numbers get even smaller. By all means let's round up all these people who choose to live out in the boonies and force them into cities of 100,000-150,000 where they will be sooooo much better off whether they think so or not.

    Moreover, I lived for 20 years in Buffalo, NY, and another dozen in the Albany area, including living in apartments, so don't even try to lecture me on the "virtues" of urban living. Been there, done that, and don't want to have any part of that any more. I like the fact that I can be to work, door to door from one end of the city to the other, in less than 15 minutes unless it's snowing hard because "bad traffic" is five cars lined up behind a school bus! I like living on a quiet street in a totally residential neighborhood where I don't have to listen to the thumping bass from a string of local bars at 2 am or smell the exhaust from the restaurants down the street, either. As I've said before on other threads, "mixed use" is highly overrated by people who haven't actually lived in it.

    I have no problem with people who choose to live in mobile homes. Or apartment complexes. Or big city neighborhoods. Or suburban developments. Or in yurts, either, if that's their thing. That my idea of the perfect place to live is well back off a lightly traveled gravel road on a big tract of land with critters for close neighbors doesn't mean that I expect everybody else to live that way. I truly fail to understand this need that you -- and a few other posters on this MB -- seem to have with forcing the worship of the cult of New Urbanism on others.

    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    Actually I'm not a "blind" adherent to New Urbanism, I know the alternatives. I wasn't always a "New Urbanist" and I wasn't always a "Traditionalist". But based on solid facts, and based on history, I know it is a much better alternative.
    I realize people love the current status quo (to a degree), and I realize people don't know the problems it causes. Yet, there is something better out there.

    We are going to destroy ourselves if we continue down the same path. We will be ruined economically, environmentally, culturally, socially, physically etc...

    People today are literally afraid of thinking things are "black and white" and people are convinced there is no such thing as objective truth. Yet for generations upon generations, humans recognized there is something as the "truth". We have convinced ourselves otherwise and it's been to our disadvantage.

    I'm convinced that we as traditionalists will win, but if we don't win, then the world will be worse off. We might be the minority right now, but looking back at history, the vast majority and history of human civilization stands on our side.
    Yes, you are. You are as "blind" an adherent of New Urbanism as any Bolshevik in the 1920s/1930s or as any obnoxious "Christian" evangelist giving religious people a bad name.

  15. #40
    Cyburbian Plus
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    What no discussion on the Urban/Wildland Fire Interface.
    Defensible space, choice of building materials - particularly roofs, no elevated decks

    For more information Firewise Communities

  16. #41
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by Linda_D View post
    The solution is for municipalities to disallow further new development in flood plains, especially residential development, or discourage it without mitigation measures. That means that existing trailer parks in flood plains cannot expand -- and new ones can't be built there but it also means the same for any other kind of development in flood plains. You are constantly coming with excuses to defend an idea that is really indefensible anywhere that purports to support democratic values in order to force people to live the way that you think they should live.



    Have you ever been "out in the country"???? You think that 100-500 people can form some magical little village where they can work, educate their kids, support cultural institutions, medical facilities, etc surrounded by prosperous organic farms that sell all their products at food coops and farmers markets??? You need a serious reality check. Most rural areas are dotted with tiny towns that are struggling to survive.



    I live in a city of 30,000 people in a county that is 1200 square miles and has all of 130,000 souls in it because I like living in an overgrown small town where it's hard to be a stranger unless you work at it. The next county east has about 75,000 people in about the same area with its largest city having around 15,000 people. This is in New York State. Most of Pennsylvania is even more sparsely populated. Get out in the Plains or the Rockies and the numbers get even smaller. By all means let's round up all these people who choose to live out in the boonies and force them into cities of 100,000-150,000 where they will be sooooo much better off whether they think so or not.

    Moreover, I lived for 20 years in Buffalo, NY, and another dozen in the Albany area, including living in apartments, so don't even try to lecture me on the "virtues" of urban living. Been there, done that, and don't want to have any part of that any more. I like the fact that I can be to work, door to door from one end of the city to the other, in less than 15 minutes unless it's snowing hard because "bad traffic" is five cars lined up behind a school bus! I like living on a quiet street in a totally residential neighborhood where I don't have to listen to the thumping bass from a string of local bars at 2 am or smell the exhaust from the restaurants down the street, either. As I've said before on other threads, "mixed use" is highly overrated by people who haven't actually lived in it.

    I have no problem with people who choose to live in mobile homes. Or apartment complexes. Or big city neighborhoods. Or suburban developments. Or in yurts, either, if that's their thing. That my idea of the perfect place to live is well back off a lightly traveled gravel road on a big tract of land with critters for close neighbors doesn't mean that I expect everybody else to live that way. I truly fail to understand this need that you -- and a few other posters on this MB -- seem to have with forcing the worship of the cult of New Urbanism on others.



    Yes, you are. You are as "blind" an adherent of New Urbanism as any Bolshevik in the 1920s/1930s or as any obnoxious "Christian" evangelist giving religious people a bad name.
    I've lived in Greece for 3 months. So yes, I've been outside of the country. I lived in a city of 140,000 people, all within an area of about 4 square miles. During that 3 months, I experienced cities such as Athens, Thessaloniki, Istanbul. I also had been to many smaller villages as well. (keep in mind, I'm against big cities like Athens, Thessaloniki and Istanbul. Cities shouldn't be allowed to get that big) During my time in that city I lived in, I walked about a combined 20-30 miles around town, exploring; not counting normal, everyday trips. As for total exploration in European cities, I'm probably over 50 miles.

    I also have friends from countries such as Slovakia and Russia. I know people who have lived in other countries such as Germany, and I know plenty of people who have traveled out of the country.

    I also know many people who lived in the United States way back when it was more traditionally designed and built. Anyone I talk to about "New Urbanist" principles recognize that it is how American cities were when they were younger.

    As for your first comment, I don't think you even realize, that according to your own definitions, that you are telling people that they can't live in the flood plain. Why are you doing this? What justification do you have to restrict people who want to live in the flood plain? That is no different than what I'm proposing. I'm saying that people cannot live in certain areas for their own well-being.

    Democracy doesn't mean an unbridled, absolute freedom to do whatever we want. Even Ancient Greece can attest to that. Democracy means that the people have a say in their government and that the governmental officials are elected. It has nothing to do with the economy or other matters such as that.

    Definition of "Democracy":
    "A system of government by the whole population or all the eligible members of a state, typically through elected representative"

    Democracy (and even a Republic) has absolutely nothing to do with a Free Market Economy. What you are talking about is a free market economy, and not a governmental system. There are plenty of free, democractic/republic countries out there that don't have free market economies.
    Last edited by TradArch12; 31 May 2011 at 2:08 PM.

  17. #42
    Cyburbian Linda_D's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by JNA View post
    What no discussion on the Urban/Wildland Fire Interface.
    Defensible space, choice of building materials - particularly roofs, no elevated decks

    For more information Firewise Communities
    It's been a wet spring in most of the areas outside of the South Central/Southwest. When a big wildfire makes the news, I'm sure somebody will raise the idea of forcing everybody who lives in rural areas to move back into cities to protect them from wildfires -- and to live sustainable life-styles of walking to neighborhood food shoppes, bars, and restaurants.

  18. #43
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by Linda_D View post
    It's been a wet spring in most of the areas outside of the South Central/Southwest. When a big wildfire makes the news, I'm sure somebody will raise the idea of forcing everybody who lives in rural areas to move back into cities to protect them from wildfires -- and to live sustainable life-styles of walking to neighborhood food shoppes, bars, and restaurants.
    Whoever said everyone has to live in a city? I don't think any New Urbanist/Traditionalist would argue that.

  19. #44
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    I've lived in Greece for 3 months. So yes, I've been outside of the country. I lived in a city of 140,000 people, all within an area of about 2 square miles. During that 3 months, I experienced cities such as Athens, Thessaloniki, Istanbul. I also had been to many smaller villages as well. (keep in mind, I'm against big cities like Athens, Thessaloniki and Istanbul. Cities shouldn't be allowed to get that big)

    I also have friends from countries such as Slovakia and Russia. I know people who have lived in other countries such as Germany, and I know plenty of people who have traveled out of the country.
    "Out in the country" does NOT mean in a foreign country. It means out in the boonies. Rural America. Farm country. Redneck Heaven. Y'know, the places you only know about cuz ya saw Dukes of Hazzard reruns.

    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    I also know many people who lived in the United States way back when it was more traditionally designed and built. Anyone I talk to about "New Urbanist" principles recognize that it is how American cities were when they were younger.
    Bull manure. There are no 150-year-olds in the US. There is no such thing as "traditionally designed and built" American cities once outside the original village/city plat -- most American CBDs have been built and rebuilt numerous times. Moreover, residential areas within cities were largely built the same subdivisions were/are built: by the whim of the developer or by the confines of economics.

    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    As for your first comment, I don't think you even realize, that according to your own definitions, that you are telling people that they can't live in the flood plain. Why are you doing this? What justification do you have to restrict people who want to live in the flood plain? That is no different than what I'm proposing. I'm saying that people cannot live in certain areas for their own well-being.
    Actually, there's a big difference. The purpose of my suggestion is to limit/prevent the loss of life and property. It's also an established zoning principle. Yours is nothing more than a subterfuge to force your ideas on others.

    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    Democracy doesn't mean an unbridled, absolute freedom to do whatever we want. Even Ancient Greece can attest to that. Democracy means that the people have a say in their government and that the governmental officials are elected. It has nothing to do with the economy or other matters such as that.
    Ummm ... maybe you should read posts more carefully for comprehension. There's a slight difference between totalitarianism and anarchy. Your proposal is far closer to totalitarism than mine is to anarchy.

  20. #45
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    ColoGI, we know it's better based on history and first-hand accounts.
    So you want better buildings for the poor, disparage balloon frames, then link us to a video ode to baloon-frame housing. Well, is it bad or not? And who is going to pay for CMU buildings for the poor to protect against fat-tail risks? You?

  21. #46
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by Linda_D View post
    "Out in the country" does NOT mean in a foreign country. It means out in the boonies. Rural America. Farm country. Redneck Heaven. Y'know, the places you only know about cuz ya saw Dukes of Hazzard reruns.



    Bull manure. There are no 150-year-olds in the US. There is no such thing as "traditionally designed and built" American cities once outside the original village/city plat -- most American CBDs have been built and rebuilt numerous times. Moreover, residential areas within cities were largely built the same subdivisions were/are built: by the whim of the developer or by the confines of economics.



    Actually, there's a big difference. The purpose of my suggestion is to limit/prevent the loss of life and property. It's also an established zoning principle. Yours is nothing more than a subterfuge to force your ideas on others.



    Ummm ... maybe you should read posts more carefully for comprehension. There's a slight difference between totalitarianism and anarchy. Your proposal is far closer to totalitarism than mine is to anarchy.
    I misread, I thought you said Outside the country. For a lot of my life, I lived what you could define as the "country". It was an unincorporated community, but I have never lived on a farm out in the real country. My father has, and lived a lot of his life there.

    As for traditional American towns... I don't really understand what you are saying, have you ever been to a real downtown? And I'm not talking about a "CBD" or a "financial district".


    "Traditional" American downtown neighborhoods:

    River Market, Kansas City, MO:
    http://www.google.com/maps?ie=UTF8&h...345.98,,0,-4.2

    Westport, Kansas City, MO:
    http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&sourc...57.79,,0,-4.43

    Downtown Independence, MO:
    http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&sourc...41.22,,0,-3.09

    Downtown Liberty, MO:
    http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&sourc...270.97,,0,-7.8

    Downtown Annapolis, MD:
    http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&sourc...88.11,,0,-3.37

    An excellent example, Downtown Alexandria, VA:
    http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&sourc...94.25,,0,-1.76

    Downtown Ann Arbor, MI:
    http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&sourc...353.04,,0,0.14

    Downtown Troy, NY:
    http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&sourc...,3.98,,0,-3.37

    Downtown Joplin, MO:
    http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&sourc...59.88,,0,-6.61

    There are countless examples... People can still remember when things were like this. You don't have to be 150 years old to remember, sprawl didn't all the sudden engulf the whole country in the 50s-60s.

    And if you look at European Cities, it makes sense that Americans would build their cities like this. American cities weren't too different from their European counterparts.

    Which of you are "New Urbanists" and which of you are opposed to it? I just want to know if you are opposed to New Urbanism in general, or just my personal arguments, or which of you are indifferent?

    Moderator note:
    ~Gedunker
    TradArch12 -- we ask that you reply to multiple posts in a single reply -- it makes reading much easier. If you are adding something to an existing post, you can edit the post -- you have approximately one hour from the time you post until the system no longer allows you to edit. Use the button at the bottom right {the "a" with the insert tool icon} to edit.Use the quote icon with the "#" symbol to reply to multiple replies. Thanks
    Last edited by Gedunker; 31 May 2011 at 3:33 PM. Reason: seq. replies

  22. #47
    Cyburbian
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    I don't think many people are opposed to New Urbanism per se, they just recognize it's not a panacea for all the planning related issues in this country. New urbanism looks good on paper but it quite frankly hasn't proven itself in many areas yet. Almost all the new urbanist projects thus far have been middle to upper income greenfield developments. There's been very little done yet in the way of redevelopments or low income housing. Then of course there are issues of it being difficult to implement for reasons that extend beyond just it not conforming to euclidean zoning.

  23. #48
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by Blide View post
    I don't think many people are opposed to New Urbanism per se, they just recognize it's not a panacea for all the planning related issues in this country. New urbanism looks good on paper but it quite frankly hasn't proven itself in many areas yet. Almost all the new urbanist projects thus far have been middle to upper income greenfield developments. There's been very little done yet in the way of redevelopments or low income housing. Then of course there are issues of it being difficult to implement for reasons that extend beyond just it not conforming to euclidean zoning.
    I do think one of my problems with New Urbanism is simply the fact that it's being treated as "New", and it's label of "New Urbanism" is quite misleading. I think it has that label to make it seem fashionable and trendy, but "New Urbanism" is actually just traditional methods that have been proven to work throughout history. I would say that we simply don't have a name for traditional urban development, because it was simply normal, it was what everyone did, there wasn't anything else until the 1900s.

    There are many, many cities in the world that are still organized in that way, we mainly have to look to Europe for those examples. I honestly wished we would just call it "traditional development" instead of "New Urbanism".

    In school we've actually been taught not to call it "New Urbanism" to a community, especially if it's a rural community. It's simply a restoration of what we destroyed and abandoned.

  24. #49
    Cyburbian Linda_D's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    I misread, I thought you said Outside the country. For a lot of my life, I lived what you could define as the "country". It was an unincorporated community, but I have never lived on a farm out in the real country. My father has, and lived a lot of his life there.

    As for traditional American towns... I don't really understand what you are saying, have you ever been to a real downtown? And I'm not talking about a "CBD" or a "financial district".


    "Traditional" American downtown neighborhoods:

    Downtown Troy, NY:
    http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&sourc...,3.98,,0,-3.37

    What you don't understand is how historically American villages/towns/cities were built. In most, only a small part of the village/town/city was platted or laid out into some kind of grid design -- if there was any design at all. That's why many villages have squares, some downtowns have a street grid radiating from a central square (generally based on the original plan of Washington, DC) and other cities just have a grid based on a main thoroughfare and cross streets. Entire cities weren't planned, however, because for most of the 19th century, most villages/towns/cities contained large amounts of undeveloped land within their boundaries. Moreover, since there was no zoning, whatever plans may have been drawn up for a particular village/town/city had no standing if a land owner wished to change it.

    As the city population grew and as technology changed (ie, the invention of the steel-structure buildings, elevators, etc), the original area of the city also changed, sometimes following the original plans if such existed, but more often, changing the street grid to fit new needs, usually economic, but sometimes political. BTW, most of the original buildings in most cities were of frame construction, close together, and susceptible to fire. Most downtown areas of cities east of the Mississippi River have been redeveloped several times, leaving only remnants of the original downtowns at best.

    Moreover, many areas that are considered downtown today -- including the photo of Second Street in Troy, NY -- were the "suburbs" in the 1800s. I lived at 243 Second Street in Troy for a couple of years in the 1990s, so I know that area well. There's a small private park just north of where I lived (Washington Square I think it's called) that is surrounded by large townhouses on three sides and another building that was a school or something. This area was used for the movie The Age of Innocence. When these were built, they were Troy's "suburbs" in the 1860s. My neighborhood, with much more modest townhouses, was built later, around 1900.

    Buffalo's Johnson Park is another example of a "downtown" neighborhood that was originally a "suburban" enclave for upper and upper middle class families, this time for those who wanted out of the crowded conditions of rapidly growing Buffalo in the 1830s-1840s.

    Finally, cities were developed in the 19th and early 20th century exactly the same way suburbs have been and are developed today: by developers. The forms of 19th century urban neighborhoods were based on economics, technology, and tradition, not on some inherent urban sensibility and certainly NOT on a particular plan that was etched in stone. Whatever the original street grid, that was only used as long as it was convenient and fit in with the plans of the powerful men who controlled cities.

  25. #50
    Cyburbian Linda_D's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by TradArch12 View post
    After the tragic tornado that hit Joplin, MO. (and personally knowing people from Joplin) It really got me to consider how essential traditional/classical architecture really is to us.

    ...

    Watching images of the devastation, I couldn't help but notice how every wooden structure was absolutely shredded, and yet the concrete and masonry buildings remained standing. (masonry buildings were still a bit damaged)
    The attached slide show shows that the ability of any building, balloon-frame or concrete and masonry, to withstand a tornado is directly related to the strength and proximity of a particular tornado:

    Springfield, MA

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