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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 3:52 AM
IrishIllini IrishIllini is offline
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Are the Great Lakes cities the most uniform in appearance?

In terms of built environment, architecture, geography, etc. Every major city on the Great Lakes is built on a grid. All have or had strong cores. They're all fairly flat. Is there any other region with such a defining development pattern?

Great Lakes Cities
Chicago
Cleveland
Detroit
Milwaukee
Toronto
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  #2  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 3:55 AM
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^ you should probably add buffalo, Hamilton, and rochester.

Chicago is noticeably brickier than the other US great lakes cities because fire.

Also, chicago and detroit are pretty dead flat, but the others all have much more varied topography with deep ravines, lakeshore bluffs, valleys, rolling hills etc.

Now, no one is gonna mistake them for San Francisco or Hong Kong, but only chicago and detroit exhibit that true pancake flat topography.
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Last edited by Steely Dan; Jan 27, 2018 at 4:05 AM.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 4:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
Chicago is noticeably brickier than the other US great lakes cities because fire.
Detroit has a lot of brick buildings. I'm sure even more were lost. Toronto has a good amount of brick housing, I think. Milwaukee and Cleveland are light on the brick construction. I'm surprised Milwaukee is given its proximity to Chicago.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 4:13 AM
ThePhun1 ThePhun1 is offline
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I'd say every major Sun Belt city besides New Orleans, Miami and LA (because of its massive size) are clones with varied topography. Phoenix is similar to the Inland Empire but aside from that, it's usually more and more of the same.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 4:31 AM
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Originally Posted by ThePhun1 View Post
I'd say every major Sun Belt city besides New Orleans, Miami and LA (because of its massive size) are clones with varied topography. Phoenix is similar to the Inland Empire but aside from that, it's usually more and more of the same.
Is SF considered Sun Belt? It doesn't really resemble any other Sun Belt city, IMO.

Re: topic. Never really thought about it before, but I think I'd agree that Great Lakes cities seem to be most uniform. To a lesser extent, Mid-Atlantic cities are also pretty similar.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 4:40 AM
ThePhun1 ThePhun1 is offline
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I'd say San Francisco is San Francisco. A few people include San Francisco in the Sun Belt but not all.
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  #7  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 4:48 AM
ThePhun1 ThePhun1 is offline
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Curiously enough, San Jose often is considered part of the Sun Belt.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:09 AM
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Originally Posted by ThePhun1 View Post
I'd say every major Sun Belt city besides New Orleans, Miami and LA (because of its massive size) are clones with varied topography. Phoenix is similar to the Inland Empire but aside from that, it's usually more and more of the same.
Atlanta is certainly not a "clone" of Dallas; the two look nothing alike.

LA is also unique and easily distinguishable, and it has nothing to do with size.
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  #9  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post

Also, chicago and detroit are pretty dead flat, but the others all have much more varied topography with deep ravines, lakeshore bluffs, valleys, rolling hills etc.
The city proper is flat, the Detroit region isn't as flat as Chicagoland though, Oakland County has lots of hills, lakes, etc.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:25 AM
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Atlanta is certainly not a "clone" of Dallas; the two look nothing alike.

LA is also unique and easily distinguishable, and it has nothing to do with size.
Downtown LA isn't really that distinguishable, it could easily fill in for Dallas or Houston besides for the hills. LA is the king of all sunbelt cities so it's a bit more filled in but it went through the same total core destruction all the others did. If they left the city alone it would still look like an inland San Francisco.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Quixote View Post
Atlanta is certainly not a "clone" of Dallas; the two look nothing alike.

LA is also unique and easily distinguishable, and it has nothing to do with size.
Come on, they're not exactly the same but they're of the same mold and yes I've been to both. Spread out, strip malls, McMansion suburbs as far as the eye can see.

Fine, you don't like "clone," how about fraternal twins?
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:42 AM
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Originally Posted by The North One View Post
Downtown LA isn't really that distinguishable, it could easily fill in for Dallas or Houston besides for the hills. LA is the king of all sunbelt cities so it's a bit more filled in but it went through the same total core destruction all the others did. If they left the city alone it would still look like an inland San Francisco.
Yeah... I beg to differ. A *trained* eye (should've included that caveat) can easily tell the difference.

LA's Historic Core could never stand in for Dallas or Houston. It has, on the other hand, occasionally stood in for NYC on film and television. But like I said, there's no fooling someone with a trained eye for cities. And why do you treat topography as some dispensable characteristic that doesn't play a major role in shaping a location's identity?
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:45 AM
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Is SF considered Sun Belt? It doesn't really resemble any other Sun Belt city, IMO.
Oh yes it does, parts of LA, and San Diego. All of the cities along the coastal west coast have a lot similarities. It’s true each city have their unique qualities, but there is no denying San Francisco, Seattle, San Diego, and LA are cousins.

I would think it’s the same with mid-western cities in the same region.
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  #14  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:45 AM
ThePhun1 ThePhun1 is offline
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Originally Posted by The North One View Post
Downtown LA isn't really that distinguishable, it could easily fill in for Dallas or Houston besides for the hills. LA is the king of all sunbelt cities so it's a bit more filled in but it went through the same total core destruction all the others did. If they left the city alone it would still look like an inland San Francisco.
If only LA had been founded at San Pedro.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Quixote View Post
Yeah... I beg to differ. A *trained* eye (should've included that caveat) can easily tell the difference.

LA's Historic Core could never stand in for Dallas or Houston. It has, on the other hand, occasionally stood in for NYC on film and television. But like I said, there's no fooling someone with a trained eye for cities. And why do you treat topography as some dispensable characteristic that doesn't play a major role in shaping a location's identity?
I know Dallas pretty well, I would visit family quite often. Downtown Dallas, looks nothing like downtown LA. If anything I always felt like it resembles a mid-western city around the core. I can’t speak on Houston since I’ve only been through the airport. I can say judging from photos, they look nothing alike.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:55 AM
ThePhun1 ThePhun1 is offline
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Originally Posted by Quixote View Post
Yeah... I beg to differ. A *trained* eye (should've included that caveat) can easily tell the difference.

LA's Historic Core could never stand in for Dallas or Houston. It has, on the other hand, occasionally stood in for NYC on film and television. But like I said, there's no fooling someone with a trained eye for cities. And why do you treat topography as some dispensable characteristic that doesn't play a major role in shaping a location's identity?
I love how LA people get so offended by the idea that LA could possibly look or feel like any other place in the Sun Belt. "How dare you compare us to a place like that!"

LA is like other places in the Sun Belt. It's not clearly distinct like New Orleans or Miami Beach. Sorry, though it is big and unique enough that you can't just say it's just another Sun Belt city.
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  #17  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 5:58 AM
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Originally Posted by ThePhun1 View Post
Curiously enough, San Jose often is considered part of the Sun Belt.
It's got to start somewhere...
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 6:00 AM
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Originally Posted by ThePhun1 View Post
Come on, they're not exactly the same but they're of the same mold and yes I've been to both. Spread out, strip malls, McMansion suburbs as far as the eye can see.

Fine, you don't like "clone," how about fraternal twins?
Atlanta is a city tucked beneath a forest with a lot more sparse, exurban-looking sprawl. Dallas is built on flat, open plains with no major mountains or national forests nearby.

Visually, Atlanta has much more in common with suburban DC than any of the major Sun Belt cities outside of Charlotte.
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Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 6:02 AM
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Originally Posted by ChrisLA View Post
Oh yes it does, parts of LA, and San Diego. All of the cities along the coastal west coast have a lot similarities. It’s true each city have their unique qualities, but there is no denying San Francisco, Seattle, San Diego, and LA are cousins.

I would think it’s the same with mid-western cities in the same region.
I'd say Oakland does more than San Francisco. There's no place to find a San Francisco anywhere else in the US.
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  #20  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2018, 6:04 AM
ThePhun1 ThePhun1 is offline
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It's got to start somewhere...
San Jose is part of San Francisco's metro area, Census Bureau be damned. That's why it's surprising one is in and the other isn't. That said, San Francisco doesn't have weather and a layout like most of the Belt.

Last edited by ThePhun1; Jan 28, 2018 at 1:28 AM.
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