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  #1  
Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 7:49 PM
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"Houston-ize" your city

in a recent thread there were discussions around the advantage some cities have with large city limits making their city look very impressive on paper when it comes to city-proper population numbers.

one of the most prime examples of this is Houston with a land area of 640.4 sq. miles and a 2020 population of 2,304,580 (4th largest municipality in the nation).



if my hometown of chicago was allowed to annex itself out to 640 sq. miles, it might look something like this:




the yellow townships on the map of cook county above represent ~638 sq. miles and contain a total of 4,586,684 people.



so how about your city? what would its population be at ~640 sq. miles?
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Last edited by Steely Dan; Oct 14, 2022 at 8:00 PM.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 8:09 PM
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For Miami it would probably just be: the populated areas of Miami-Dade County (leave out the farmland and Everglades/Biscayne National Parks...etc). That would give a population of 2.7 million.

Miami-Dade's "Urban Development Boundary" includes 420 square miles and includes most of the population. Population outside is pretty sparse.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 8:59 PM
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The whole Las Vegas valley is about 600 square miles. Since 90%+ of the Las Vegas MSA lives in the valley that would put Las Vegas at 2 Million or so. Note the whole valley hasn't been developed yet. Based on density of development if it fully was it would more or less be the same population of Houston with Vegas being the slightly more populous of the two.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 9:10 PM
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There would just be more mountains and trees. Maybe some farms or wineries, but not that much people. I'm guessing the population would increase by 100 or so!
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 9:33 PM
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Interesting exercise!

What I did with Los Angeles is, if LA consolidated with/annexed Glendale, Pasadena, Long Beach, Burbank, Santa Monica, Culver City, El Segundo, Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, Torrance (all incorporated cities), and East Los Angeles (unincorporated community), LA's land area would go from 469.49 square miles to 649.47 square miles, and its population would go from 3,898,747 (per the 2020 Census) to 5,350,946, by adding up the populations of those other communities.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 9:56 PM
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If you just do the "inner ring" Bay Area cities in SF, San Mateo, Alameda, and Santa Clara counties, it's about 650 sq miles and ~4.3 million.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 10:00 PM
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Originally Posted by homebucket View Post
If you just do the "inner ring" Bay Area cities in SF, San Mateo, Alameda, and Santa Clara counties, it's about 650 sq miles and ~4.3 million.
I own two houses in Houston; one on the extreme NE end and the other on the extreme SE and it takes me longer to get from one to the other than to get from San Jose to San Francisco.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 10:16 PM
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I own two houses in Houston; one on the extreme NE end and the other on the extreme SE and it takes me longer to get from one to the other than to get from San Jose to San Francisco.
Funnily enough, it's a similar situation within San Jose actually. I sometimes joke with my friends that I can get from Oakland to Fremont faster than they can get from East Side SJ to the West SJ or South SJ to North SJ.
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  #9  
Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 10:36 PM
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Off topic but on the flip side of this hypothetical, if our respective cities did consolidate with other cities and become a bigger city, would they eventually want to secede? Those municipalities I mentioned in my previous post are separate municipalities for a reason.

Parts of the city of Los Angeles, in my lifetime, have had secession movements, all voted down. They've wanted to secede for basically the same reasons: more local control and say in their local affairs, better infrastructure management, and the feeling/perception of neglect from city hall as compared with other areas of the city.

Has any part of Chicago wanted to secede and form their own city (I feel like I've asked this before on these forums)? How about Houston, as physically large it is in area? Have there been secession movements there? I think La Jolla, a wealthy coastal neighborhood of San Diego, used to want to secede.
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Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 10:52 PM
galleyfox galleyfox is offline
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Originally Posted by sopas ej View Post

Has any part of Chicago wanted to secede and form their own city (I feel like I've asked this before on these forums)? How about Houston, as physically large it is in area? Have there been secession movements there? I think La Jolla, a wealthy coastal neighborhood of San Diego, used to want to secede.
I don’t think secession ever really comes up in Chicago. Not anytime in recent history at least. Can’t even think how it would be done because the wealthiest areas are close to the core.

And having to rely on Cook County for services isn’t a big enough “reward” so to speak to jumpstart any proposals.

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  #11  
Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 10:58 PM
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I don’t think secession ever really comes up in Chicago. Not anytime in recent history at least. Can’t even think how it would be done because the wealthiest areas are close to the core.

And having to rely on Cook County for services isn’t a big enough “reward” so to speak to jumpstart any proposals.
But would having to rely on the county be the only other option? Wouldn't they be able to form their own city governments?

In LA, Hollywood, Venice, and the San Fernando Valley had secession movements; the Valley had more than one secession movement, the other times were in the 1960s or something. I think even West LA wanted to secede. In my opinion, it's no coincidence that those areas border other municipalities like Beverly Hills/West Hollywood next to Hollywood, Burbank next to the SFV, and Santa Monica next to Venice. I think maybe those people see how much "better" those smaller city governments are in terms of more local say in how their tax money is spent, their regularly paved streets, etc., and wished that they too could run their own small city.
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  #12  
Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 11:28 PM
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Toronto would include all of Oakville, Mississauga, Brampton, Vaughan, Richmond Hill, Markham and the urban portion of Pickering to reach roughly 1,657km2 or 640 miles2

That would give it a population of 5,520,000 give or take a few.
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  #13  
Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 11:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sopas ej View Post

Has any part of Chicago wanted to secede and form their own city (I feel like I've asked this before on these forums)?
Not that I'm aware of.

Joining the City of Chicago is like joining the USA.

Once you're in, you're motherfucking IN!

Forever.

The only possible way out is all-out war.


However, over the decades, there have been secession movements of various parts of cook county to splinter off and form their own county.

They never go anywhere. it's usually because some right-wingers get all hot and bothered about some new county tax, so they throw a little tantrum, then the anger starts to flame out, and the effort eventually fizzles. Life goes on.....




I do remember reading an article a little while ago that some folks in the wealthy Buckhead area of Atlanta want to splinter off from the city and form their own municipality.

I don't know how "real" that movement is or if it'll go anywhere. Someone from the Atlanta area would have to give more insight.
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Last edited by Steely Dan; Oct 15, 2022 at 12:02 AM.
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  #14  
Old Posted Oct 14, 2022, 11:55 PM
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Wink

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Originally Posted by sopas ej View Post
But would having to rely on the county be the only other option? Wouldn't they be able to form their own city governments?

In LA, Hollywood, Venice, and the San Fernando Valley had secession movements; the Valley had more than one secession movement, the other times were in the 1960s or something. I think even West LA wanted to secede. In my opinion, it's no coincidence that those areas border other municipalities like Beverly Hills/West Hollywood next to Hollywood, Burbank next to the SFV, and Santa Monica next to Venice. I think maybe those people see how much "better" those smaller city governments are in terms of more local say in how their tax money is spent, their regularly paved streets, etc., and wished that they too could run their own small city.
Theoretically, I guess.

But in practice most of the small Chicago suburbs also screwed the tax pooch, so most everyone knows a potential smaller government would probably end up in the same spot but with higher taxes.

And they would still have to pay Chicago for transit, water, schools, ect. And the County would still control prison and healthcare…

I don’t think it’s even an option to vote for secession, so it just doesn’t come up.

Arlington Heights - $695K
2020- $11,516
https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/2.../3299589_zpid/

Libertyville, Lake County - $675K
2020 - $10,832
https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/7.../4840109_zpid/

Chicago - Lakeview - $699K
2020 - $10,397
https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/3.../3709367_zpid/
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  #15  
Old Posted Oct 15, 2022, 12:00 AM
galleyfox galleyfox is offline
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
Not that I'm aware of.

Joining the City of Chicago is like joining the USA.

Once you're in, you're motherfucking IN!

Forever.

The only possible way out is all-out war.

That’s how the Chicago suburbs used to punish dissent 100 years ago.

Vote this way, or we’ll force your neighborhood to jOiN cHiCaGo!! FOREVER!

Austin (formerly of Cicero Township) learned that the hard way when they agreed to build an L through Oak Park. Unforgivable.


Quote:

The Town of Austin, Illinois, was Annexed to Chicago against the towns wishes in 1899.

On October 25, 1899, the residents of the Town of Austin, Illinois, awoke to find their town had been annexed to the City of Chicago at 12:01 AM. And they didn’t like it. The residents wanted their community of about 4,000 people to remain a separate Illinois town. A referendum had been held, and most Austin voters had been against joining Chicago. But it had happened anyway. The whole thing was called un-American.

The Austin Town Hall is now in Chicago, Illinois.
The story began in 1865, when the Austin subdivision was created along the C&NW railroad line, seven miles due west of Lake Street from downtown Chicago. The area was part of Cicero Township. Besides Austin, the township included the settlements of Cicero, Berwyn, and Oak Park.

Austin grew fast. In 1870 the Cicero Township Hall was built in the community at Lake and Central. Everything remained peaceful until 1898 when the Lake Street Elevated Railroad arrived on the scene. The ‘L’ company wanted to extend its line from Chicago west to Austin Boulevard. The Town of Austin favored the extension, but the rest of Cicero Township did not. But since Austin controlled the township government, the extension was approved.

That did it. The rest of Cicero Township was tired of being pushed around by the Austin minority. So they hatched a plan to get rid of Austin.

The City of Chicago was eager to add more territory. Austin was a lovely, semi-affluent community with an attractive tax base. Petitions were gathered, and a referendum on the annexation of Austin was held on April 5, 1899. The law stated that most of a township’s voters had to approve any takeover by Chicago. More than half the voters within Austin rejected the annexation. But the rest of Cicero Township voted to let Chicago have Austin by a considerable margin. That was just enough to tip the outcome. The anti-annexation Austin group was furious. They went to court and filed appeals. The Illinois Supreme Court ruled the referendum was binding. Austin was to become part of Chicago.

October 24, 1899, was the last day for an independent Austin. Cicero Township police were withdrawn and replaced by 21 Chicago police officers. Five Chicago firemen settled into the Austin firehouse, and no local resistance was encountered.

Though over a century has gone by since annexation, The Austin community still calls its park fieldhouse “The Town Hall,” nearly 120 years later, and... the ‘L’ line that started the ruckus now runs all the way through the Village of Oak Park.
https://drloihjournal.blogspot.com/2...-1899.html?m=1
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  #16  
Old Posted Oct 15, 2022, 12:16 AM
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^ wow, fascinating local history that I was not aware of.

Of course, in a less stupid world, ALL of the old Cicero township (Cicero, Berwyn, oak park, and Austin) would've been annexed into the city.

Along with stickney township, it would've made for a nice and clean western city limit along harlem avenue for the bulk of the city.
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Last edited by Steely Dan; Oct 15, 2022 at 2:18 PM.
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Old Posted Oct 15, 2022, 1:41 AM
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Speaking of Austin, if we incorporated our entire ETJ, we’d be about 640 sq. miles.

https://www.arcgis.com/home/webmap/v...7.2777,30.5295

Without any numbers I can find by Googling, I would hazard a rough guess that this would add about 150k to the population? ~1.15 million.
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HTOWN: 2305k (+10%) + MSA suburbs: 4818k (+26%) + CSA exurbs: 190k (+6%)
BIGD: 1304k (+9%) + MSA div. suburbs: 3826k (+26%) + adj. CSA exurbs: 394k (+8%)
FTW: 919k (+24%) + MSA div. suburbs: 1589k (+14%) + adj. CSA exurbs: 90k (+12%)
SATX: 1435k (+8%) + MSA suburbs: 1124k (+38%) + CSA exurbs: 18k (+11%)
ATX: 962k (+22%) + MSA suburbs: 1322k (+43%)
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  #18  
Old Posted Oct 15, 2022, 2:10 AM
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Originally Posted by wwmiv View Post
Speaking of Austin, if we incorporated our entire ETJ, we’d be about 640 sq. miles.

https://www.arcgis.com/home/webmap/v...7.2777,30.5295

Without any numbers I can find by Googling, I would hazard a rough guess that this would add about 150k to the population? ~1.15 million.
How easy is it to annex out there in Texas? Can cities just take what they want, or does it have to go through a vote and tax-sharing schemes? CA cities have to include the areas they want to annex in the Sphere of Influence and an area can fight to not be included in that. It has to go through the Local Agency Formation Commission too.
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Old Posted Oct 15, 2022, 2:50 AM
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How easy is it to annex out there in Texas? Can cities just take what they want, or does it have to go through a vote and tax-sharing schemes? CA cities have to include the areas they want to annex in the Sphere of Influence and an area can fight to not be included in that. It has to go through the Local Agency Formation Commission too.
And I believe LAFCOs are just a California thing, created in the 1960s to "more orderly" create municipalities and handle annexations. Prior to a LAFCO (every CA county has one), it was much easier to create a municipality, but what ended up happening was the creation of cities for special-interest groups, like the City of Industry and City of Commerce, which were basically created to be tax havens for industries, and the creation of completely gated cities like Hidden Hills and Rolling Hills, to protect rural estate type of properties and limit entry to the city to residents and their guests only. These types of incorporations are no longer allowed under a LAFCO. And, an incorporated city has to be proven to be able to provide revenue for itself. East Los Angeles, long an unincorporated community, has wanted to incorporate as a city several times, most recently in 2012, but it was determined that it could not generate enough tax revenue to maintain itself as its own city.

I believe annexations used to be easier in California too, before LAFCOs were created. But since the 1800s, annexations cannot cross county lines, which is why San Francisco is as small as it is, since they are a consolidated city and county, which they've been since 1856.
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  #20  
Old Posted Oct 15, 2022, 2:57 AM
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Originally Posted by TWAK View Post
How easy is it to annex out there in Texas? Can cities just take what they want, or does it have to go through a vote and tax-sharing schemes? CA cities have to include the areas they want to annex in the Sphere of Influence and an area can fight to not be included in that. It has to go through the Local Agency Formation Commission too.
Until 2018, a city could annex into their Full Purpose Jurisdiction anything within their ETJ without the say of the affected population. As of 2018, property owners (exclusive of anyone renting) within a proposed annexation hold a yes/no vote on accepting that annexation.
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HTOWN: 2305k (+10%) + MSA suburbs: 4818k (+26%) + CSA exurbs: 190k (+6%)
BIGD: 1304k (+9%) + MSA div. suburbs: 3826k (+26%) + adj. CSA exurbs: 394k (+8%)
FTW: 919k (+24%) + MSA div. suburbs: 1589k (+14%) + adj. CSA exurbs: 90k (+12%)
SATX: 1435k (+8%) + MSA suburbs: 1124k (+38%) + CSA exurbs: 18k (+11%)
ATX: 962k (+22%) + MSA suburbs: 1322k (+43%)
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