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  #41  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2023, 2:56 PM
IluvATX IluvATX is online now
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Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
I’ve been under the impression that Tempe has the best urbanity in Arizona for a while now. At least at any scale. Am I wrong here?
I lived in Phoenix(Ahwatukee) some 20 years ago when they damned the river in Tempe and created the lake and it seems the development has been pretty ongoing since. Tempe was always my go to area for food, entertainment, etc. as it was easily the most interesting city in the Phoenix metro.
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  #42  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2023, 5:26 PM
Buckeye Native 001 Buckeye Native 001 is offline
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For sure, Tempe is probably the best urbanity the Grand Canyon State has to offer. A giant ass university right in the middle of town helps.

Tucson has such a strange development pattern. Downtown is kind of on the western edge of the city but it and 4th Avenue are decent (at least for a sunbelt state whose population boom occurred in the past half century) and Phoenix has made huge strides (bolstered by ASU Downtown). Its going to underwhelm anyone with impossible standards but its a work in progress trending (mostly) in the right directions.
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  #43  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2023, 5:32 PM
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Originally Posted by nomarandlee View Post
Do you have a pin of where you are talking? Granted it was more of a quick drive through the city when I went a few years ago, and my expectations were high, but I did not see anything that warranted any strong kudos in terms of character or urbanity.
Agree. My sister lives there. Pleasant enough, but unremarkable (very, very much so considering the real estate values!).
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  #44  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2023, 5:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
I’ve been under the impression that Tempe has the best urbanity in Arizona for a while now. At least at any scale. Am I wrong here?
I'd imagine this is correct. ASU coupled with the historic downtown area and Mill Avenue (a small but concentrated busy street with offices, bars, focus of pedestrian activity, and some remaining historic structures) combined with light rail, street car, densifying residential, and gobs of mid- to lower-high rise construction activity. Plus Tempe Town Lake and the future Coyotes Stadium district.

Tucson is probably close with very similar characteristics to Tempe but having larger areas of more historic threads left, but lacking the overall densification of new development and large scale projects compared to Tempe. Also lacking proximity to and connection via light rail to a major airport and other nodes of the City (i.e. Phoenix, Tempe, Mesa, all connected).

I'd say Downtown Phoenix is quickly catching up to or passing Tempe in terms of nightlife/recreation interest and pedestrian activity, and ahead of Tempe in many other aspects given it's the center of business, government, law, etc for Arizona. Plus it's on a giant roll for growth and development that isn't matched by Tempe, Scottsdale, or Tucson, nor shows signs of slowing in relation to the others.
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  #45  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2023, 6:13 PM
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Originally Posted by BigDipper 80 View Post
It's not at all remarkable from a walkability standpoint, but I've always been a fan of Southfield, Michigan:



Royal Oak, Birmingham and Pontiac are also really interesting satellites of Detroit.

I too loooove those gold buildings. I used to drive to re ord time in Roseville from Okemos. They were my Detroit landmark.
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  #46  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2023, 7:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
I don’t mean to sound pretentious, but I wish everyone here gets to check out Brookline. It’s the best suburb in the country, or among the absolute top set. You get everything from 40,000+ pp sq mile, rail-serviced urban squares to pristine New England rural estates, dotted by Olmsted parks throughout, and all in under 7 sq miles. I wouldn’t call Brookline an edge city though. It’s a classic street car suburb. And I’m pretty sure Coolidge Corner and Chestnut Hill (Brookline) are closer to downtown than parts of Dorchester and Hyde Park (Boston).

Lowell is an edge city by function but not by intention. More through absorption or osmosis I guess. Either way, it’s an awesome place now. It’s also at an all-time population high.
Yeah, Brookline is great. If Boston didn't have such tiny municipal boundaries, it would absolutely make sense as a city neighborhood, as it really just feels like an extension of the City of Boston neighborhoods next to it.

If we're talking about great suburbs, I think Shaker Heights and Cleveland Heights definitely deserved to be mentioned. They both have beautiful single family neighborhoods with mature trees, substantial historic multi-family districts, vibrant walkable business districts, and great transit access. Throw in a fairly diverse and progressive population and solid retail offerings, and it's really about the ideal suburban environment. This area is hands down where I'd choose to live in Cleveland, and it has to be among the best suburbs in the Midwest, if not the whole country.
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  #47  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2023, 7:15 PM
iheartthed iheartthed is online now
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Originally Posted by pdxtex View Post
I too loooove those gold buildings. I used to drive to re ord time in Roseville from Okemos. They were my Detroit landmark.
Aesthetically, I really like the towers of the Southfield Town Center. But building them was a HUGE mistake.
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  #48  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2023, 12:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
You get everything from 40,000+ pp sq mile, rail-serviced urban squares to pristine New England rural estates, dotted by Olmsted parks throughout, and all in under 7 sq miles.

the bolded is one of the craziest things about Brookline.

this thing is only 4.5 miles from downtown boston:

https://www.google.com/maps/@42.3217.../data=!3m1!1e3


you don't see bonafide country mansion estates like that in chicagoland until you're like at least 20 miles outside of downtown.




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Originally Posted by iheartthed View Post
Aesthetically, I really like the towers of the Southfield Town Center. But building them was a HUGE mistake.
the tower with the gold glass and X-bracing is really nice, but that whole part of southfield is an auto-centric sprawl-burban nightmare at street level:

https://www.google.com/maps/@42.4800...7i16384!8i8192
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Last edited by Steely Dan; Mar 23, 2023 at 1:03 AM.
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  #49  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2023, 2:51 PM
montréaliste montréaliste is offline
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Originally Posted by IluvATX View Post
I lived in Phoenix(Ahwatukee) some 20 years ago when they damned the river in Tempe and created the lake and it seems the development has been pretty ongoing since. Tempe was always my go to area for food, entertainment, etc. as it was easily the most interesting city in the Phoenix metro.

Their " damning" (sic) the river, is that what brought on the drought?
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  #50  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2023, 3:34 PM
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Originally Posted by montréaliste View Post
Their " damning" (sic) the river, is that what brought on the drought?
The damming of the Salt River to create the Tempe Town Lake about 20+ years ago was purely for development/recreation.

The Salt River was dammed much further upstream by the Roosevelt Dam in 1911. This was a major driver to the growth of central Arizona and the Phoenix area beginning 100 years ago.
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  #51  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2023, 3:48 PM
iheartthed iheartthed is online now
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
the tower with the gold glass and X-bracing is really nice, but that whole part of southfield is an auto-centric sprawl-burban nightmare at street level:

https://www.google.com/maps/@42.4800...7i16384!8i8192
Yeah, I wish they could just pick up the four tallest towers and move them to downtown Detroit. Southfield built nearly as many office and residential towers as Detroit between 1970 and 1990, which is pretty absurd.
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  #52  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2023, 4:23 PM
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Originally Posted by montréaliste View Post
Their " damning" (sic) the river, is that what brought on the drought?
Quote:
Originally Posted by PHX31 View Post
The damming of the Salt River to create the Tempe Town Lake about 20+ years ago was purely for development/recreation.

The Salt River was dammed much further upstream by the Roosevelt Dam in 1911. This was a major driver to the growth of central Arizona and the Phoenix area beginning 100 years ago.
You might be on to something though, maybe someone did 'damn' i.e. curse the river and throw us into drought, haha. But no, the Salt/Verde river system is generally quite healthy, the reservoirs are currently full and they are currently allowing runoff through the dams to make room for the big snowpack we got this year. It's the Colorado River system that's overtaxed and in more dire straits.
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  #53  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2023, 6:41 PM
montréaliste montréaliste is offline
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Originally Posted by muertecaza View Post
You might be on to something though, maybe someone did 'damn' i.e. curse the river and throw us into drought, haha. But no, the Salt/Verde river system is generally quite healthy, the reservoirs are currently full and they are currently allowing runoff through the dams to make room for the big snowpack we got this year. It's the Colorado River system that's overtaxed and in more dire straits.


I’m glad you’re doing ok. This winter has been a boon to much of the Southwest as far as precipitations go. I hope more is to come, if less dramatic in tone…
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