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  #1  
Old Posted Sep 29, 2019, 9:04 PM
the urban politician the urban politician is offline
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Characterize your metro's city/suburban relationship

I will go first:

I think the relationship between Chicago and its burbs is fairly healthy. There is not much mutual animosity, although some exists. Some suburbanites view the city as crime ridden, corrupt, etc and some city residents literally refuse to go to the burbs for any reason. But for the most part, it feels like a unified region with the core of the city as the heart of the action, and nobody disputes that.

I wasn't grown up and around here in the 80's/90's but I get the sense that there was more animosity toward the city from the burbs back then, and that the burbs were on a path toward rivaling the city. But since then the city has really taken back all of its prior dominance as the center of importance in the region, and everybody seems to have given up any delusions to the contrary.

How about your metro?
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  #2  
Old Posted Sep 29, 2019, 10:19 PM
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South Florida functions as a collection of cities, so there's no real "one city vs the burbs" vibe there. Miami is seen as a Hispanic dominated city so more "American" residents in other places like West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale don't venture down there unless they are going to South Beach or a sports event.

People here identify with their town, city, suburb, village, and even county more than the most dominant ones in the metro.

Dave and Bobdreamz may have better things to say about this since they been in the area longer.
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  #3  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 2:42 AM
ThePhun1 ThePhun1 is offline
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Where does one end and the other begin? Sometimes it's a joke, sometimes not. As a technicality, I went to high school two miles from Houston proper but it was in Galveston County.
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  #4  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 2:53 AM
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Not sure how to answer this since I rarely think of the suburbs. Virtually everyone at my workplace lives in the city too (the exceptions tend to also have an appointment at Fermilab or Argonne... and most of the people who live outside the city live in Oak Park...).

So far this year, I've been to the suburbs (as opposed to through the suburbs) once... in order to go kayaking in Skokie Lagoon. I guess I'll be taking the train out to Geneva in a week and a half for a workshop at Fermilab so that will be my second trip out to the suburbs this year.
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Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 2:54 AM
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Oh man, Hampton Roads it pretty much just a collection of cities/suburbs that all think they should be the center of everything. The relationship between the cities are generally decent but they compete with each other for everything under the sun so no one city can really shine.
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Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 4:34 AM
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Originally Posted by jtown,man View Post
Oh man, Hampton Roads it pretty much just a collection of cities/suburbs that all think they should be the center of everything. The relationship between the cities are generally decent but they compete with each other for everything under the sun so no one city can really shine.
Is the Hampton Roads the largest metro area in the US with no obvious dominant city?
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  #7  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 1:01 PM
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Originally Posted by SIGSEGV View Post
Is the Hampton Roads the largest metro area in the US with no obvious dominant city?
Not from Hampton Roads, but I'd argue that Norfolk is pretty clearly the "real city" of the bunch. Yes, Virginia Beach is the largest city by population, but that's largely due to Virginia's weird local incorporation laws, which ensure cities cannot be part of counties. In the mid 20th century the mergers of cities and counties resulted in the creation of the "cities" of Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, and Suffolk, which all had oodles of undeveloped land still at the time. The former was so large that it eventually eclipsed the more traditional cities of Hampton Roads in population, even though it lacks an urban core to speak of.

The "core four" of Hampton Roads are really Norfolk, Portsmouth, Hampton, and Newport News. Newport News and Hampton were both very small cities in the prewar area. Newport News had a downtown area close to the shipyards, but it was basically urban renewed into oblivion, with some scattered old buildings left but nothing cohesive remaining. Hampton has a very small downtown area with maybe a block of decent urbanity (but little commercial vitality).

Portsmouth, though the smallest of the "main four" today, boomed a bit earlier than the above two. It has a real downtown area which goes on for several blocks. Just to the north it has the (rather pretentiously named) Olde Towne, which is one of the handful of semi-intact rowhouse-like neighborhoods in the South. But it still doesn't hold a candle to Norfolk, which has an actual (though small) CBD area, a nice traditionally urban streetscape with prewar midrises along Granby St, and the (relatively) old urban neighborhood of Ghent.
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  #8  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 2:03 PM
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LA's weird about this because so many suburbs don't feel like regular suburbs, just part of LA's "blob". And many have their own identity.

And it's hard to compare it to other metros, because it's so different.

I remember DC residents having more of a arrogance towards to their suburbs than Chicago.
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  #9  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 3:08 PM
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I remember DC residents having more of a arrogance towards to their suburbs than Chicago.
Probably because they’re divided between three states whereas most of Chicago’s suburban population is in Illinois.
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  #10  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 3:21 PM
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The suburbs are mostly inconsequential to NYC. I don't know the names of any mayors or elected officials outside of NYC, except for the governors of the tri-state, and the mayor of Newark.

NY's situation is completely the opposite of my experience growing up in the Detroit area, where suburban county executives were seen, locally at least, to have equal importance to the mayors of Detroit. L. Brooks Patterson, the late county exec of Oakland County, MI, was often jokingly referred to as the mayor of the suburbs. It is hard to imagine that any region had a more toxic urban-suburban divide than Detroit and suburban Detroit, from about 1970 until about 2010. The dynamic is quite noticeably less hostile now, but not perfect.
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  #11  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 9:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SIGSEGV View Post
Is the Hampton Roads the largest metro area in the US with no obvious dominant city?
Yes. And you can tell when you are here. Norfolk fills in that role in many ways(largest downtown, huge Navy base) but its still feels very much so like a collection of small cities with one huge suburb(Virginia Beach).
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  #12  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 4:28 AM
ThePhun1 ThePhun1 is offline
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If only Virginia Beach became a real city. Of those cities, Hampton should be the anchor imo.
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  #13  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 9:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThePhun1 View Post
If only Virginia Beach became a real city. Of those cities, Hampton should be the anchor imo.
Just curious, why Hampton and not Norfolk?
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  #14  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 9:49 PM
ThePhun1 ThePhun1 is offline
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Originally Posted by jtown,man View Post
Just curious, why Hampton and not Norfolk?
It always struck me as a place that should be big because of its geography/location. Norfolk would be but is kinda forgettable as a major city.

To add a weaker but still intriguing point, the area is essentially named for Hampton.

Last edited by ThePhun1; Oct 1, 2019 at 3:29 AM.
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  #15  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 10:20 PM
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Originally Posted by ThePhun1 View Post
It always struck me as a place that should be big because of it's geography/location. Norfolk would be but is kinda forgettable as a major city.

To add a weaker but still intriguing point, the area is essentially named for Hampton.
I've often wondered how cool it would have been if the peninsula developed in a much more dense way and instead of Newport News and Hampton having 300k between the two cities they would contain at least 1 million people.

However, in reality, Hampton impacts this region very little and the traffic to get there from the southside is terrible(bridge tunnel). Not trying to get into a city vs city but have you been to downtown Hampton or downtown Norfolk? The two are nowhere near each other in terms of jobs, activity, or residents. The Phoebus neighborhood in Hampton probably draws in more people than downtown.
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  #16  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 11:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtown,man View Post
I've often wondered how cool it would have been if the peninsula developed in a much more dense way and instead of Newport News and Hampton having 300k between the two cities they would contain at least 1 million people.

However, in reality, Hampton impacts this region very little and the traffic to get there from the southside is terrible(bridge tunnel). Not trying to get into a city vs city but have you been to downtown Hampton or downtown Norfolk? The two are nowhere near each other in terms of jobs, activity, or residents. The Phoebus neighborhood in Hampton probably draws in more people than downtown.

Yeah Hampton's downtown looks pathetic. I'm somewhat familiar with Newport news (still secondhand info) due to Jefferson Lab. Everyone says Newport News sucks...
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Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 4:28 AM
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Originally Posted by the urban politician View Post
I will go first:

I think the relationship between Chicago and its burbs is fairly healthy. There is not much mutual animosity, although some exists. Some suburbanites view the city as crime ridden, corrupt, etc and some city residents literally refuse to go to the burbs for any reason.
Do normal people in Chicagoland really project tangible animosity toward the city proper or the suburbs? Or is that just an online partisan-warrior thing?
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  #18  
Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 4:38 AM
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Do normal people in Chicagoland really project tangible animosity toward the city proper or the suburbs? Or is that just an online partisan-warrior thing?
Mostly the latter, from my 4+ decades of experience, the first 2 decades of which I lived on the other side of the equation.

But, TUP is right that there was more hostility back in the '80s/'90s when the city was loosing a lot of businesses to the burbs, culminating in Sears moving out of their iconic world's tallest building headquarters in the loop to a monumentally anonymous suburban office park campus way the fuck out in the burbs.

And look how well Sears has turned out for it.
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Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 5:40 AM
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^ I think Sears' woes stemmed from some pretty shady corporate management over the past decade or so. Well after they abandoned the Sears Tower.

I live in a very Stepford 'exurban' area...30 miles from downtown and still live in Houston. Needless to say, Houston and the 'burbs are one in the same in a lot of ways.
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Old Posted Nov 22, 2019, 6:39 PM
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^ I think Sears' woes stemmed from some pretty shady corporate management over the past decade or so. Well after they abandoned the Sears Tower.

I live in a very Stepford 'exurban' area...30 miles from downtown and still live in Houston. Needless to say, Houston and the 'burbs are one in the same in a lot of ways.
JManc...sometimes I wonder if you've ever been to Houston, let alone live in it.

Houston and the suburbs could not be more different..In fact there is almost an entitled term for Houstonians who live inside the Loop ..Inner Loopers and they really do detest the suburbs.

How are they different?
Inner Loopers value public green spaces/parks, increased urban planning/density, mass transit, the amenities of the city, loathe communing to and from the suburbs as a way of life, and they tend to be moderate to left of center politically, they heavily encourage diversity and culture and appreciate Houston's eclectic dining scene.

The suburbanites, on the other hand, value chain restaurants and faux urban shopping centers. They value their kid's school district and McMansions on their own private lot over cultural amenities. They aren't as eager to embrace diversity and are lukewarm about the city's cultural spots. They tend to heavily vote republican, live in single family homes, and only support mass transit IF it were to include a route train from downtown to their front door DIRECTLY for, their convenience, and they overwhelmingly think the light rail system we have is a toy train waste. I could go on and on about their political differences.

Again, the INNER LOOP of Houston and the suburbs could not be more on two different pages..in fact they are reading two different books.

Source: A native Houstonian that grew up in a suburb but has lived "Inside The Loop" for almost 25 years now.
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