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What will be America's first carfree city?

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What will be America's first carfree city?

Old 04-07-15, 01:03 AM
  #176  
B. Carfree
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Originally Posted by gmm213 View Post
Isn't Portland Oregon the most bicycle friendly? I was just watching a documentary about it. Though car free? Unless cyclists start all moving to the same city I don't see it happening
Don't believe all the propaganda you see. Portland is very far from being bike friendly. Sure, it's better than Florida and it may be among the tallest midgets in the contest, but it's still very much a car-dominated locale and becoming more so. Bikes are shunted to the corner and any person on a bike who dares to leave that corner is quickly disabused of the notion that Portland embraces bikes.
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Old 04-20-20, 01:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Zedoo View Post
Anchorage, AK
How come?
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Old 04-20-20, 01:46 AM
  #178  
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
Don't believe all the propaganda you see. Portland is very far from being bike friendly. Sure, it's better than Florida and it may be among the tallest midgets in the contest, but it's still very much a car-dominated locale and becoming more so. Bikes are shunted to the corner and any person on a bike who dares to leave that corner is quickly disabused of the notion that Portland embraces bikes.

tallest midgets in the contest is very true for all places around the world... https://copenhagenizeindex.eu/
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Old 04-21-20, 07:29 AM
  #179  
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Originally Posted by Roody View Post
NYMag.com thinks it will be Boston.

What Will Be America?s First Car-Free City? -- Next

What do you think?

Ground rule: Assume that there WILL be at least one carfree city by the end of this century. This is a chance to use our imaginations. Try to provide logical reasons for your choice, but no need for statistics.
Every American city developed before 1880 has been car free before. Before the car was the bicycle, and before that was the horse. To think that the US was always a car centric country is wrong. Developments would center around Pre 1920s development. We have a map of what could be done. Zoning would need to be changed back to pre 1940s zoning with modifications. Banking regulations would need to change also. We would probably be a more densely populated city growing vertically and more environmentally friendly. Look at old parts of your city that may or may not be gentrified, dilapadated..etc. Look at the streets that are user friendly and designed around people vs designed around the automobile. You will see what was done in the past. More intracity rail and back to trains. Believe it or not. Los Angeles was designed around streetcars not Freeways until the mid 20th century.
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Old 04-21-20, 02:51 PM
  #180  
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Originally Posted by alloo View Post
Every American city developed before 1880 has been car free before. Before the car was the bicycle, and before that was the horse. To think that the US was always a car centric country is wrong. Developments would center around Pre 1920s development. We have a map of what could be done. Zoning would need to be changed back to pre 1940s zoning with modifications. Banking regulations would need to change also. We would probably be a more densely populated city growing vertically and more environmentally friendly. Look at old parts of your city that may or may not be gentrified, dilapadated..etc. Look at the streets that are user friendly and designed around people vs designed around the automobile. You will see what was done in the past. More intracity rail and back to trains. Believe it or not. Los Angeles was designed around streetcars not Freeways until the mid 20th century.
With tongue in cheek I have to say that concept is so pre covid 19. I simply don't see it that way. You think density will not be a bad word? You think Buses and Trains will bounce back? Human density isn't a popular concept right now. Check this out. https://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/loca...buses/2380735/
some people are afraid to leave their houses and are terrified that the protestors will get the states back to business as usual. Gas is under a buck fifty and there are a glut of new cars sitting on the lots just waiting for buyers. They are saying we will not be free of this till maybe next year. Cities like New York are billions under water and big construction companies with big budgets are not part billions for small businesses. Of course mine is a younger city so there are few if any old parts to look at.

We will see soon enough. We will see what direction society goes in by January next year.

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Old 04-23-20, 06:57 AM
  #181  
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
With tongue in cheek I have to say that concept is so pre covid 19. I simply don't see it that way. You think density will not be a bad word? You think Buses and Trains will bounce back? Human density isn't a popular concept right now. Check this out. https://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/loca...buses/2380735/
some people are afraid to leave their houses and are terrified that the protestors will get the states back to business as usual. Gas is under a buck fifty and there are a glut of new cars sitting on the lots just waiting for buyers. They are saying we will not be free of this till maybe next year. Cities like New York are billions under water and big construction companies with big budgets are not part billions for small businesses. Of course mine is a younger city so there are few if any old parts to look at.

We will see soon enough. We will see what direction society goes in by January next year.
The US is the only country in the world that builds suburbs. Humans have always lived in Cities. Corvid-19 is not the first or the worst pandemic in Human History and yet since year 0 humans live in cities around the world. This will not change. The mall is dying people want main streets again. People don't want to be stuck in their cars and eating fast food. Don't let 80 years of suburban living cloud your judgement.
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Old 04-23-20, 09:39 AM
  #182  
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Originally Posted by alloo View Post
The US is the only country in the world that builds suburbs. Humans have always lived in Cities. Corvid-19 is not the first or the worst pandemic in Human History and yet since year 0 humans live in cities around the world. This will not change. The mall is dying people want main streets again. People don't want to be stuck in their cars and eating fast food. Don't let 80 years of suburban living cloud your judgement.
Incorrect.
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Old 04-24-20, 05:41 AM
  #183  
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The city of Avalon on the island of Catalina off the coast of California has strict restrictions on the size of private vehicles. Essentially, anything larger than a golf cart is illegal. The old Austin Mini is about the largest gasoline-powered vehicle that qualifies.
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Old 04-24-20, 08:29 AM
  #184  
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I'm all for car-free cities... and don't think the oil + car industries will yield. Might they be behind (some of) the protests? Who knows? Power yields nothing without a fight....

Might be as interesting to speculate which will be the last city to go car free....

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Old 04-24-20, 09:47 AM
  #185  
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Austin, TX may not be the first car-free city but the city council is implementing bike lanes, please see MoveATX.org. Some of the bike lanes, especially in downtown, have concrete medians separating them from the car lanes. Other bike lanes have plastic, 3-foot poles, and some simply have lines painted on the asphalt.

The "center" of the city is surrounded by four freeways to the north, south, east and west, with the main interstate highway running through the middle. It's about 10 miles in any direction.

However, much of the housing stock is prohibitively expensive, both in terms of rent and home prices, due to the fact that people from the east and west coasts are moving here. This means that suburbanization is taking over and there is traffic congestion all the time because people are living in Buda, Kyle, Pflugerville, Round Rock, Circle C, etc.

I moved here from Los Angeles twenty-six years ago, bought my house in Central East Austin in 2000 for a ridiculously low price and I ride my bike all the time.
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Old 04-24-20, 03:12 PM
  #186  
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Originally Posted by pendolare View Post
Austin, TX may not be the first car-free city but the city council is implementing bike lanes, please see MoveATX.org. Some of the bike lanes, especially in downtown, have concrete medians separating them from the car lanes. Other bike lanes have plastic, 3-foot poles, and some simply have lines painted on the asphalt.


The "center" of the city is surrounded by four freeways to the north, south, east and west, with the main interstate highway running through the middle. It's about 10 miles in any direction.


However, much of the housing stock is prohibitively expensive, both in terms of rent and home prices, due to the fact that people from the east and west coasts are moving here. This means that suburbanization is taking over and there is traffic congestion all the time because people are living in Buda, Kyle, Pflugerville, Round Rock, Circle C, etc.


I moved here from Los Angeles twenty-six years ago, bought my house in Central East Austin in 2000 for a ridiculously low price and I ride my bike all the time.

Something tells me that at less than $1.50 a gallon for gas it will be a long time before we see car free cities in Texas. Add to that how the governor is opening businesses in the state, Stores will be able to open for pickup services first. In other words if you want to get clothes for the kids you can order them and they will be waiting for you to pull up and get them loaded in your -----car. Everything from food delivery to sporting goods here is delivered by car. Not once have I seen bicycles on the streets for anything but exercise anywhere east of Dallas. Well the few times I drive into Dallas I don't see many bikes either.


I have been in these forums for a long time and this very condition was supposed to be the new dawn for cycling as predicted years ago. When the red star hit the air conditioner people would flock back to bicycles, Buses, trains and car sharing, and life would go on. But it has gone to drive through pick up and and delivery plus mass transit has become a bad word.


I came to Texas well after you did but I was closer to the beach communities. Bike friendly in Texas is less than California beach cities and even there car free is a pipe dream. And for someone that mentioned Avalon on Catalina? Now business and small companies have brought over small trucks and vans and they even have business making tours across the island from Avalon to the Cat Harbor. only residents tend to use golf carts. While all three harbors are full every weekend with hundreds of big power boats with engines running most of the night, until the parties stop. https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attracti...Californi.html
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Old 04-24-20, 05:03 PM
  #187  
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Car free neighborhoods are seemingly on their way in the USA. The one below doesn't seem to be oriented towards families with school aged children, though.

https://www.fastcompany.com/90434128...cant-own-a-car

"Culdesac Tempe, a 1,000-person development set to open fall 2020, bills itself as the “world’s first post-car real estate developer.” Founders Ryan Johnson and Jeff Berens say they want to provide people the option of living a car-free lifestyle. ... Most units are one bedroom, and will be “priced competitively” compared to new apartment buildings in the area."

"Though residents will be banned from owning or parking a car onsite per their lease, the Culdesac Tempe neighborhood will still be accessible for emergency vehicles, service vehicles, and ride-shares, which will have designated pickup and drop-off locations around the perimeter. There will also be a small fleet of car-share vehicles that will be available as a transportation option for residents when they want to go beyond where the neighborhood’s light rail can take them."

Last edited by FiftySix; 04-24-20 at 05:06 PM.
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Old 04-24-20, 05:25 PM
  #188  
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Originally Posted by FiftySix View Post
Car free neighborhoods are seemingly on their way in the USA. The one below doesn't seem to be oriented towards families with school aged children, though.

https://www.fastcompany.com/90434128...cant-own-a-car

"Culdesac Tempe, a 1,000-person development set to open fall 2020, bills itself as the “world’s first post-car real estate developer.” Founders Ryan Johnson and Jeff Berens say they want to provide people the option of living a car-free lifestyle. ... Most units are one bedroom, and will be “priced competitively” compared to new apartment buildings in the area."

"Though residents will be banned from owning or parking a car onsite per their lease, the Culdesac Tempe neighborhood will still be accessible for emergency vehicles, service vehicles, and ride-shares, which will have designated pickup and drop-off locations around the perimeter. There will also be a small fleet of car-share vehicles that will be available as a transportation option for residents when they want to go beyond where the neighborhood’s light rail can take them."
a lot of that was pre Covid 19 wasn’t it? Not sure how that will fly the government rules at this time. But we shall see. People who know in AZ. Seem pretty happy to drive everywhere with gas at a buck twenty- five. Mass transit is taking a big hit right now.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.azc...amp/5061855002
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Old 04-25-20, 07:58 AM
  #189  
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
a lot of that was pre Covid 19 wasn’t it? Not sure how that will fly the government rules at this time. But we shall see. People who know in AZ. Seem pretty happy to drive everywhere with gas at a buck twenty- five. Mass transit is taking a big hit right now.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.azc...amp/5061855002
Yep, pre Covid 19.

I still think trendy upper middle class neighborhoods like this will take off. They already have here, just without the "car free" moniker and the current upper middle class inner city neighborhoods are the ones that have the nice MUPs and bike paths around here. The upper middle class suburbs here have nice MUPs as well, but the paths don't lead out of the "masterplanned community" very far if at all. So in both cases, people in those neighborhoods will need some sort of longer distance all weather transportation.

Since the link to the article in the OP no longer works, and I came along too late to read it, I'll guess I Like to Bike's comments mean the Boston car free idea is based on the same principle as the neighborhood underway in AZ. Which I guess is intended mostly for professionals without school age children. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Last edited by FiftySix; 04-25-20 at 08:17 AM. Reason: car less, careless, car free
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Old 04-25-20, 08:16 AM
  #190  
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post

There is a love-hate relationship with car-free malls. I've encountered a few, but can't quite remember where they were.
The Houston area had at least two outdoor car free malls decades ago. Not strip centers, but malls. I think the competition from air conditioned indoor malls helped kill them off.

(Late reply, sorry.)
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Old 04-25-20, 11:54 AM
  #191  
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”What will be America's first carfree city?”
Originally Posted by FiftySix View Post
Car free neighborhoods are seemingly on their way in the USA. The one below doesn't seem to be oriented towards families with school aged children, though.

https://www.fastcompany.com/90434128...cant-own-a-car

"Culdesac Tempe, a 1,000-person development set to open fall 2020, bills itself as the “world’s first post-car real estate developer.”...

"Though residents will be banned from owning or parking a car onsite per their lease, the Culdesac Tempe neighborhood will still be accessible for emergency vehicles, service vehicles, and ride-shares, which will have designated pickup and drop-off locations around the perimeter.

There will also be a small fleet of car-share vehicles that will be available as a transportation option for residents when they want to go beyond where the neighborhood’s light rail can take them."
I previously joined this LCF thread discussion about "car-free neighborhoods (zones),
"Car-Free outings for otherwise car-heavies”
Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
in short,the idea is to go out and do something without driving at all, not because you want to LCF in general but because you want to LCF for a day, or at least a few hours.
Originally Posted by 350htrr View Post
I also think a purposeful LCF activity "makes it a purposeful" LCF activity, thus Car-Heavy's will NOT apply...

My scenarios are about the only way a car-heavy person is going to go and do car light things, drive to where one does things where driving is not required to do them once you are there...
Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
Yes, for an outing to be carfree it would have to be within walking/biking range
Originally Posted by 350htrr View Post
BUT.. Your whole premise is how to get car-heavies to do LCF kind of things, great. But that just isn't going to happen. They "may" actually go on a 5Km hike once they get to a park that has a path worth the walk/hike...

But most people would rather ride than walk to the nearest restaurants, and they would more than likely need to drive a car to get to the park... JMO
Originally Posted by jon c. View Post
People walk a lot more in places where there is somewhere to walk. But in much of the US, housing is relatively far from anywhere people want to go.

And if you want to walk from your home to a nearby restaurant and that involves crossing a six lane highway and walking across a large parking lot, the journey is much less appealing.

Some cities are seeing revitalization of urban neighborhoods that allow people to walk to shops and restaurants. But these will never accommodate more than a small percentage of the population.

The best way to encourage people to do things without a car is to put those things closer to their homes. But the US has developed in such a way that it's now much harder to do that.
Originally Posted by 350htrr View Post
Exactly, and that is why people drive everywhere, even 10 blocks to go to restaurants...

And they are lazy/probably may lazy/or even could be just not wanting to be "seen" walking, (unless in a jumpsuit) in a class conscientious society, where you walk and not drive...

JMO, You know, like England was/used to be/is...
Originally Posted by jon c. View Post
I think setting has a lot to do with that. People don't mind walking in hospitable places in part because other people are walking there as well. It's becomes a communal activity and humans do innately seek community.

So walking on a shaded sidewalk or path in your neighborhood is something people are socially comfortable with. And people certainly walk without such issues in trendy urban neighborhoods. Walking is a 'thing' there.

But the psychology is vastly different along the busy highways and vast parking lots that exist in so much of this country. In part because the setting just isn't very pleasant, but also because people don't want to be seen there.

They may not even consciously realize it, but I think this is where the class consciousness takes hold. In large part because the only people seen on foot in such places are not the 'right' sort.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
Some cities never lost those neighborhoods, like Boston.

It seems to me that in order to be an attractive place to support a variety of restaurants and shops to which to walk (and not drive to visit that neighborhood…the basic premise of this thread) a neighborhood must be a large area with a substantial, dense population living there, likely that evolved in the pre-automotive era.

I think a lot of urban revitalization projects tend to create enclaves as driving destinations to walk around in such large cities like in my native Detroit.

One of my greatest complaints about the automotive industry/culture is that by by intent, or just popular acceptance, previously vitalized neighborhoods just withered away, and deprived the citizens of the choice to Live Car Free.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
I often tout Boston as the epitome of LCF/LCL in America, not to brag, but illustrate the possibilities. When I take visitors on a 4-5 mile walking tour of downtown Boston, I introduce it with this explanation:

Several years ago, the architectural critic of the Boston Globe, Robert Campbell, was visiting Southfield, Michigan, a town I know well, and described it as the City of Towers and Cars (including “busy highways and vast parking lots" [and tall office buildings, and sprawling office and retail parks]).

In his article, he contrasted that that to the City of Outdoor Rooms (Boston) which is visited as one would visit a person’s home, passing through the various portals, from room to room, admiring the furnishings within.


That’s the motif I use on my tours as we start in the Back Bay, and pass through the Public Garden, Boston Common, Washington St and Quincy Market, the North End, Beacon Hill and back to Back Bay. The walk becomes the destination.
Originally Posted by Roody View Post
”What will be America's first carfree city?”

NYMag.com thinks it will be Boston.

What Will Be America?s First Car-Free City? -- Next

↓↓↓↓

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 04-25-20 at 01:17 PM.
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Old 04-25-20, 12:26 PM
  #192  
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ɅɅɅɅ

I just noted this recent preceding post.
Originally Posted by FiftySix View Post
Yep, pre Covid 19.

I still think trendy upper middle class neighborhoods like this will take off. They already have here, just without the "car free" moniker and the current upper middle class inner city neighborhoods are the ones that have the nice MUPs and bike paths around here.

The upper middle class suburbs here have nice MUPs as well, but the paths don't lead out of the "masterplanned community" very far if at all. So in both cases, people in those neighborhoods will need some sort of longer distance all weather transportation.

Since the link to the article in the OP no longer works, and I came along too late to read it, I'll guess I Like to Bike's comments mean the Boston car free idea is based on the same principle as the neighborhood underway in AZ. Which I guess is intended mostly for professionals without school age children. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
From the cited article:

"But, recently, Anthony Townsend, the senior research scientist at NYU's Rudin Center for Transportation Policy, imagined how Boston could transform into "a place where mobility has changed profoundly." The short version of the vision for Boston is this: Starting around 2020, Boston's taken over by micro-apartments, filled with young, connected people who aren't particularly attached to their homes — they might move every few months, just to stay within walking distance of work, school, or friends.

At the same time, cognitive science advances our understanding of how people react to "walking environments," and yields streets and sidewalks that make people more likely to move about."

Wow, that is some kinda imagination! A city filled exclusively with young "connected" people wandering around from place to place in order to keep on walking. Sounds like it could have been imagined by the premier LCF daydreamer...
Not especially. We, like other families have raised children in the city, and even downtown, for us in Kenmore Square near Fenway Park. A big exodus though does occur when children begin school. but many parents stay put and find good schools, maybe private ones. For grades 1 to 6, my son was taken by subway to a bucolic suburb, but then entered an excellent nearby "exam School."

I do recall one day we had taken the immediate family (two children) then about ages 4 and 10 to a pristine, typical auto-centric Detroit suburb with single family houses and nicely mowed lawns. We came back to Boston and were walking through a mob scene of Red Sox fans exiting a game, and streets littered with programs and other debris. I did think to myself, "Is this a place to raise children?"

They have both turned out well, IMO and love our neighborhood. Once though my son at an early age wanted to move to Michigan, but that was because it meant vacation and cousins.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 04-25-20 at 09:01 PM. Reason: added quote by I-Like-to-Bike
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Old 04-25-20, 01:01 PM
  #193  
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Originally Posted by Digger Goreman View Post
I'm all for car-free cities... and don't think the oil + car industries will yield. Might they be behind (some of) the protests? Who knows? Power yields nothing without a fight....

Might be as interesting to speculate which will be the last city to go car free....
I recently posted to “So what's your beef with Multi-Use Pathes?”:
Originally Posted by drlogik View Post
There was a time not all that long ago when there were no bike paths, bike lanes or dedicated "exercise paths". We have it good now, really good....
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
10+ to that assessment. ...

Historically, back in the 19th century when cycling was a new, innovative mode of transportation, advocates like the League of American Wheelman were powerful enough to agitate for better roads, as Multi-Use Pathes, with the horses and pedestrians
Originally Posted by League of American Bicyclists: Mission and History:

The League was founded as the League of American Wheelmen in 1880. Bicyclists, known then as “wheelmen,” were challenged by rutted roads of gravel and dirt and faced antagonism from horsemen, wagon drivers, and pedestrians
.
In an effort to improve riding conditions so they might better enjoy their newly discovered sport, more than 100,000 cyclists from across the United States joined the League to advocate for paved roads. The success of the League in its first advocacy efforts ultimately led to our national highway system.

https://www.bikeleague.org/content/mission-and-history
Then the automobile came along and new advocates could further agitate for even more and better roads, and cars became the predominant and overwhelmingly powerful users.

So now in these days I think it is unlikely that cyclists’ desire for an extensive segregated (and likely costly) bike system that serves many destinations will ever be fulfilled, unless:
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
"The Breakdown of Nations"

...This variation of "Small is Beautiful" sounds like the feudal system of the Middle Ages, that arose during the Dark Ages after the Fall of the big, bad Roman Empire...maybe a post-apocalyptic "Mad Max" scenario.
Originally Posted by FiftySix View Post
I was thinking the same thing about ancient nation states. Then there was the unification of Germany and the unification of Italy in the 1800s, too.

Mad Max is about right, or The Walking Dead. The population of the world would have to be cut drastically to go back to nation states, IMO.

Now, maybe moving to a small country in today's world would achieve the desired effect?]
Originally Posted by El Cid View Post
If America was absolutely going to have a carfree city, I would bet on Detroit.

Everyone with enough money to move will be long gone, and the bankrupt city will look like a post-apocalyptic war zone.
Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
…I have to think that El Cid's imagination on the future first car free city is more reality based then this "stuff" from the NYU eggheads.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 04-25-20 at 04:17 PM. Reason: added quotes by El Cid and I-Like-to-Bike
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