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Old Posted Aug 24, 2019, 8:27 PM
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Quixote Quixote is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Los Angeles
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I would definitely agree that the historical bones of LA are most closely aligned with that of Detroit, which is hardly surprising given that those are the only two major cities that came of age in the early 20th century and developed interurban streetcar networks as the auto industry began to take off. Similarity of genetic profile will always be there.

However, LA’s undergone a lot of (botched) plastic surgery since then and today it has just as many things in common with other places, most notably the Bay Area and Houston. Besides the obvious historical connection and the concomitant development patterns, the commonalities between the two are that their metros have an orthogonal grid structure, suburban-centric wealth, and are in a general state of transition.

One thing that I completely disagree with is the assertion that Downtown Detroit’s historic stock resembles anything remotely like LA’s Historic Core. The pre-war skyscrapers (mostly Art Deco and Beaux-Arts) look very NYC/Chicago/Philly, and it's a vernacular that only LA lacks (150 feet was the height limit). You can even find prewar skyscrapers exceeding the 150-foot threshold in places like Houston, Dallas, Denver, and Seattle.
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