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  #81  
Old Posted Aug 9, 2019, 10:48 PM
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Originally Posted by KB0679 View Post
Charleston and Savannah do belong in the same sentence (and often are), just not for the size of their cores. It's for the time period in which their cores developed, architecture, geography, historic significance, and their status as historic Southern ports of entry for slaves. Savannah and New Orleans both have artsy and creative flairs, eccentric personalities, and vibrant nightlife; while Charleston and New Orleans both have Caribbean-inspired architecture, distinct Black subcultures, and notable cuisines.
Fair enough, but I wasn't tapping into the historical or cultural aspects. I think there's a certain "cutesy" quality to both Charleston and Savannah's respective urban cores that make them feel more museum-like and self-contained, whereas New Orleans' core has a much more organic visual language. I can only imagine what it's like in person, and I think the best pedestrian experiences it offers are as unique and charming as any place in NYC, Philly, or Boston (referencing a discussion point in the "Phoenix downtown" thread).
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  #82  
Old Posted Aug 9, 2019, 11:44 PM
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Originally Posted by edale View Post
I've been to Charleston many times, and in fact, my parents are 2 of those Ohioans who are moving there (well, building a vacation home on Kiawah Island to be there part of the year). I've felt first hand the conservativeness as a queer, northern, liberal guy. One time I was riding my bike around and some redneck dude in a Clemson shirt came out and tried to tell me I needed to stop biking past his house or else he'd come back out and "things would get ugly". When I went down in 2016, there were Trump signs EVERYWHERE you looked. I've been to restaurants where I've seen local white people talk to the black staff as if it was the 1960s or something. Of course there was the shooting at the AME church in Charleston, but this is America and sadly that could have really taken place anywhere. :-(
I can believe your experience and yes, the metro as a whole is conservative like most Southern metros. But Charleston itself along with some of the closer-in suburban parts (and definitely most of North Charleston) is best described as moderate and as I stated, Charleston County is reliably blue. Not overwhelmingly but about a good 60% or so. As far as White people treating Black wait staff like the help, I don't think that's more of a thing in Charleston compared to anywhere else--and I'm a Black guy, native SC'er that works in Charleston. I'm certainly not claiming that it's the best place in the country for race relations because that's certainly not true but it's not really the worst either. Oh and it should be mentioned that the Mother Emanuel shooter wasn't from Charleston; he lived about 1.5-2 hours away in a rural area.

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Black people weaving baskets in and of itself isn't a big deal. But the fact that they're doing it in front of and inside the former slave market is really eerie, to me at least.
It seems that White Northerners on the whole are uncomfortable with the history of slavery in the U.S. in general so to have an actual historic relic of the institution where Blacks are present *and* working can be unnerving. But I actually like the fact that such a scene serves as a jarring reminder of what and who actually built Charleston so there should be some discomfort there. At least this time around we're getting paid for our labor.

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It's like the complete opposite of NOLA where it seems like there is and has been tremendous mixing of races, and where the culture of NOLA is inextricably linked to black culture. In Charleston, this does not exist- or at least I've not seen it. You have black Charleston, and you have white Charleston, and there isn't much mixing or influence between the two. There are some interesting sub-cultures, to be sure. The Gullah communities that exist there are incredibly interesting, but they exist as their own thing rather than being integrated into the larger culture of the city.

I love the architecture of old Charleston. I really enjoy the trees and local plants and animals that live there. The fact that it's right on the ocean is also pretty cool, and is a positive point of differentiation from Savannah and NOLA. But in my experience, I have never felt welcome or really accepted there, whereas when I went to NOLA, I left thinking it was an incredibly special, accepting, exciting city. I could be way off, but those are my perceptions
I do understand the appeal of NOLA as it had a different sort of history as was mentioned earlier, plus it is known for its music, revelry, and nightlife whereas Charleston is more subdued on that front. But the ironic thing is that despite a greater level of racial mixing in NOLA, it's actually more segregated than Charleston metrowide. There are certainly issues with gentrification there and poverty seems more entrenched there and historically the city has been held back by dysfunctional leadership, something Charleston hasn't had to deal with. Undoubtedly Blacks have participated in the city's cultural and civic life in New Orleans to a greater degree than Charleston, but Blacks have constituted a greater share of the population of New Orleans compared to Charleston also and there are still lots of issues lurking beneath the surface there. Charleston's biggest advantage here is having a much healthier economy that's driven by industries that Blacks already participate in and many of those companies are within reasonable proximity to Black neighborhoods.
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  #83  
Old Posted Aug 9, 2019, 11:49 PM
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Because that 2% matters much more than sheer numbers would have you believe at first sight.

90%+ of Quebec City looks like Mississauga, yet it's widely praised/beloved (and a tourist magnet), even if the UNESCO World Heritage Site core (the walled old town + the old lower town at the base of the cliff) is just ~2% of the city.

You can understand that, can you?
I think Quebec City has a bigger/better core than Charleston, though. But I think it's a decent analogy, and no, I wouldn't really put it on a pedestal. Most of it looks like typical Canada.

Are Canadians flocking to QC? It's pretty hard to access from the U.S., with very few direct flights.
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  #84  
Old Posted Aug 9, 2019, 11:53 PM
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Ignoring the threat of sea level rise and looking at both cities on Google Maps, I believe Savannah has a better chance of growing than Charleston. It’s not limited to a peninsula and surrounding areas and has a more expansive grid.

As for New Orleans, something big economically would have to happen to get it growing again despite the hurricane threat. Possibly whatever is still powering Houston.
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  #85  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 12:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Quixote View Post
Fair enough, but I wasn't tapping into the historical or cultural aspects. I think there's a certain "cutesy" quality to both Charleston and Savannah's respective urban cores that make them feel more museum-like and self-contained, whereas New Orleans' core has a much more organic visual language. I can only imagine what it's like in person, and I think the best pedestrian experiences it offers are as unique and charming as any place in NYC, Philly, or Boston (referencing a discussion point in the "Phoenix downtown" thread).
I get what you're saying. Unlike Charleston and Savannah, New Orleans actually reached big city status early in its history and remained one into the 20th century, so in the core you have the CBD, the French Quarter, and the Warehouse District all co-existing side by side, just like in the core of Philly you have the CBD, Old City, and South Street all co-existing together. That said, don't discount the pedestrian experiences to be had in Charleston and Savannah. To bring it back to Savannah, the way Oglethorpe planned that city was a stroke of genius. The thoroughfares lined with mature moss-draped oaks and Palmetto trees with the squares interspersed throughout, framed by beautiful historic homes and churches...it's amazing.
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  #86  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 12:04 AM
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Originally Posted by jd3189 View Post
Ignoring the threat of sea level rise and looking at both cities on Google Maps, I believe Savannah has a better chance of growing than Charleston. It’s not limited to a peninsula and surrounding areas and has a more expansive grid.
Not sure what you mean here; both are growing but Charleston (the metro) is growing faster and has been for at least a decade now. Maybe you're just referring to the historic district in each city?
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  #87  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 12:16 AM
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Originally Posted by KB0679 View Post
I know I'm biased, but the Lowcountry aesthetic, which can be found all over the region, is pretty alluring. The mature oak trees draped with moss with Palmetto trees sprinkled in, historic sites, and water views in various places in the Charleston area makes for an overall attractive place along the coast. James Island, John's Island, Daniel Island, Isle of Palms, Mount Pleasant, Goose Creek, etc all have that in spades, and other suburban areas aren't too far away.
I do have to say there's a bit of an "otherworldly" aspect to the Lowcountry I didn't get with places further away from the coast. I mean, somewhere like Atlanta or Raleigh, even though it's hotter than where I live, doesn't actually look alien in terms of foliage or anything. It could be virtually anywhere else in the Eastern United States. In contrast, even though a lot of the houses in Charleston are reminiscent of Boston, and a lot of the houses in Savannah reminiscent of Philly, a quick look at the foliage will set you straight.

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Well Birmingham was founded after the Civil War, so there was almost no old pre-1900 residential Birmingham to begin with. But what I mean by "bones" are the structural elements, mainly the street grid and preserved historic commercial and institutional buildings (plus UAB and the convention facilities). Not sure if you've been keeping up with what's been going on down there, but there have been a ton of conversions, rehabs, as well as new infill. After Railyard Park got built and the Barons moved back to the city from the suburbs and built a new ballpark, stuff snowballed from there and it's still going strong.
I'm not saying it's a bad thing that Birmingham has a relatively large stock of older warehouses and commercial storefronts which can be re-purposed. But pretty much any city in America which had any construction prior to 1950 has a downtown area - or at least a commercial strip - which looks urban. To my mind the thing that separates urban cities from non-urban ones is what happens when you get out of the downtown area. Does it go right to detached single-family homes with yards, or is there a finely grained set of residential neighborhoods with various housing typologies?
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  #88  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by sopas ej View Post
Here you go, Louisiana's Code Noir from 1724: https://www.blackpast.org/african-am...ode-noir-1724/

Look at code 43 (hehe I'm glad I remember my Roman numerals).

I'm not denying that slaves in Louisiana were treated harshly. But New Orleans society developed differently than other societies in the South for the reasons I mentioned before.
Thank you. No, I totally misread the original post that said when it was a French colony... I misread that to mean that because it was a former French colony thing were this or that way when it became a part of the US.

Last edited by jtown,man; Aug 10, 2019 at 12:44 AM.
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  #89  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 12:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Quixote View Post
I've not been to New Orleans, but based on a quick Google Street View exploration, I find its core extremely impressive in terms of the quality of its urban fabric and its geographic expanse--especially for a metro of its size (1.2 million). Charleston and Savannah don't belong in the same sentence, and neither does Miami/Miami Beach.

The French Quarter and CBD together cover 1.5 square miles. As a comparison, Chicago's Loop spans about 1.6 square miles (but like 40% of it is park space), while Boston's core (CBD, Back Bay, Beacon Hill, West End, North End) is also roughly the same size. Although this geographic area has a tiny residential population and there are spotty parts, it has fantastic bones throughout.

I personally find NO's core more impressive than that of other cities (i.e. Baltimore, Pittsburgh) that tend to get more love in the urban category simply because of Rust Belt legacies.
New Orleans creates its own category. Outside of the CDB and FQ you still find this odd(and some would say ugly) landscape of shotgun houses for miles in all directions. It's like dense, urban, beautiful but at the same time it looks so ran down but then its NO, so it adds charm. A very unique city, it's an American treasure.
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  #90  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 12:39 AM
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I do have to say there's a bit of an "otherworldly" aspect to the Lowcountry I didn't get with places further away from the coast. I mean, somewhere like Atlanta or Raleigh, even though it's hotter than where I live, doesn't actually look alien in terms of foliage or anything. It could be virtually anywhere else in the Eastern United States. In contrast, even though a lot of the houses in Charleston are reminiscent of Boston, and a lot of the houses in Savannah reminiscent of Philly, a quick look at the foliage will set you straight.
Absolutely. Even in suburban areas with typical 70's-style ranch houses, having those mature oak trees interspersed gives the area a look and a vibe you won't find elsewhere. And the region typically does a good job of preserving those old trees in new neighborhoods too.

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I'm not saying it's a bad thing that Birmingham has a relatively large stock of older warehouses and commercial storefronts which can be re-purposed. But pretty much any city in America which had any construction prior to 1950 has a downtown area - or at least a commercial strip - which looks urban. To my mind the thing that separates urban cities from non-urban ones is what happens when you get out of the downtown area. Does it go right to detached single-family homes with yards, or is there a finely grained set of residential neighborhoods with various housing typologies?
Outside of the old colonial-era cities, you go straight to detached SFH once you leave downtown in every Southern city. So when folks talk about a city like Birmingham having good bones, the reference is most likely to downtown proper only. And sure most cities that existed before 1950 have a downtown area with a basic urban form but not all have a similarly preserved historic commercial urban fabric, especially considering how unkind urban renewal was to cities. Also Birmingham has several smaller commercial districts spread throughout the area. Some exist as their own towns and others are part of the city itself. That's not the norm for most Southern cities, particularly one as young as Birmingham.
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  #91  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 1:34 AM
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Not sure what you mean here; both are growing but Charleston (the metro) is growing faster and has been for at least a decade now. Maybe you're just referring to the historic district in each city?
Yep, I was referring to the historic district and continuation of the grid. Savannah can expand southward and can build along the riverfront. Charleston is pretty much at full capacity at the core and would have to build on other nearby nodes surrounded by suburban development to continue a cohesive urban environment.
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  #92  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 1:46 AM
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Yep, I was referring to the historic district and continuation of the grid. Savannah can expand southward and can build along the riverfront. Charleston is pretty much at full capacity at the core and would have to build on other nearby nodes surrounded by suburban development to continue a cohesive urban environment.
Actually Charleston isn't fully built out on the peninsula; it is urbanizing northward beyond the historic district. Further up, the area known as the neck, near the terminus of I-26, has historically been a bit run down and industrial, but now it's seeing new urban development. Prior to the recession, there was even a huge New Urbanist development proposed for that area and has recently been jumpstarted again: https://www.postandcourier.com/busin...2b97660e1.html
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  #93  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 1:50 AM
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^^^ Interesting, I did notice that industrial area near the north of the peninsula. It’s close to North Charleston, which is another municipality by itself. Maybe development could continue through there to the airport?
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  #94  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 1:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Quixote View Post
I've not been to New Orleans, but based on a quick Google Street View exploration, I find its core extremely impressive in terms of the quality of its urban fabric and its geographic expanse--especially for a metro of its size (1.2 million). Charleston and Savannah don't belong in the same sentence, and neither does Miami/Miami Beach.

The French Quarter and CBD together cover 1.5 square miles. As a comparison, Chicago's Loop spans about 1.6 square miles (but like 40% of it is park space), while Boston's core (CBD, Back Bay, Beacon Hill, West End, North End) is also roughly the same size. Although this geographic area has a tiny residential population and there are spotty parts, it has fantastic bones throughout.

I personally find NO's core more impressive than that of other cities (i.e. Baltimore, Pittsburgh) that tend to get more love in the urban category simply because of Rust Belt legacies.

the historic core of savannah is about 1 square mile, (from the river to park ave, the southern end of forsyth park, and MLK to broad st) or easily more if you factor in some of the more residential areas south. it might not be as purely commercial as new orleans but many of the streets in that square mile have storefronts of various types.
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  #95  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 1:54 AM
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For whatever reason, northerners don't move to NOLA, but they're crazy for Charleston.
For the same reason the liberal media (and most residents of the East & West Coasts) assumed Hillary was going to run away with the election.

Let's call a spade a spade.
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  #96  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 1:58 AM
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The difference is that New Orleans itself is heavily black while in Charleston most of the blacks live in North Charleston while the historic peninsula is majority white.
Sad that you have to spell that out to someone living in America in 2019.
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  #97  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 2:03 AM
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Originally Posted by jd3189 View Post
^^^ Interesting, I did notice that industrial area near the north of the peninsula. It’s close to North Charleston, which is another municipality by itself. Maybe development could continue through there to the airport?
That's quite possible over time. North Charleston has historically seen more suburban residential development but with Charleston's residential boom continuing northward, it will experience true urbanization also.
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  #98  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 2:05 AM
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Sad that you have to spell that out to someone living in America in 2019.
It's not completely accurate though. The Black neighborhoods in Charleston proper on the peninsula are simply being gentrified to high hell.
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  #99  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 2:24 AM
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Crawford can't seem to figure out what makes Charleston different from Knoxville or Mobile or New Orleans and an attractive place for tourists and migrants.

The great lengths he'll go to discredit a place he simply doesn't understand, yet pretend to be an expert on. Lol.
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  #100  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2019, 3:03 AM
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For the same reason the liberal media (and most residents of the East & West Coasts) assumed Hillary was going to run away with the election.

Let's call a spade a spade.
People prefer Charleston to New Orleans because things were generally pretty good under Obama thus the candidate marketing herself as a third term of the same was polling well (especially before we learned she had cheated) compared to an clownish outsider who was a total unknown quantity at the time...?
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