Alternate city layouts?

- London if one of the more ambitious reconstruction plans after the Great Fire of 1666 is executed.
- Washington D.C. if Pierre L'Enfant manages to piss off even more influential people than IOTL when he e.g. had some senator's houses torn down that were built in spots where his master plan envisioned a boulevard or a square.
- Paris if Napoleon III doesn't rise to power and thus never gives Baron Haussmann carte blanche to rebuild Paris.
- New York City if the Commissioners' Plan of 1811 is either never made or not enacted.
 
The Vatican City could have been a fair bit larger if Pope Pius IX had been prepared to swallow his pride and come to an agreement with the Kingdom of Italy following the capture of Rome and annexation of the Papal States, instead he decided to sulk in the Vatican for the rest of his life. The Italians, rather than just our timeline's Vatican City as set out in the Lateran Treaty, were willing to offer the whole of the Leonine City. Here's a rough outline from another thread, the yellow border being the current Varican City and the orange border showing what was on offer.

 
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kernals12

Banned
This Grid Plan for London was drawn up after the fire of 1666

I made a thread about it

More interestingly, Daniel Burnham wanted to go full Haussmann on San Francisco

There would've been huge amounts of parks, ⅓ of the city's area in fact, lots of boulevards that would intersect at great monuments, a vast civic center, and most impressively of all, a great 30 mile road that would travel around the edge of the city, elevated in some places, basically an early freeway.

I made a thread about that too

IOTL San Francisco is the most beautiful city in the Western Hemisphere, ITTL it would easily be the most beautiful city in the World, unless Paris wants to dredge out an artificial bay.
 
Grid systems are ugly as hell. Glad London didn't get one. I believe Christopher Wren had a plan for London to have a new road system of concentric circles.
 
Grid systems are ugly as hell. Glad London didn't get one. I believe Christopher Wren had a plan for London to have a new road system of concentric circles.
Wren's plan, assuming it's the one below you were writing about, was grid-ish but had a number of piazze and associated diagonal roads.

 

kernals12

Banned
Wren's plan, assuming it's the one below you were writing about, was grid-ish but had a number of piazze and associated diagonal roads.

It also seems likely that if a Grid system was implemented in the City, then it would've been extended to all of London.
 
Who does that matter to besides people in helicopters?
You really, really, really need to stop being like this to people. Your entire post history over the past few weeks has been condescending and dismissive to everybody who disagrees with you in the slightest. It is not in any way conducive to discussion when you talk down to people instead of talking to them.

This particular post isn't terrible in and of itself, but it's an illustration of how you talk to everybody. It needs to stop.

You've been warned about this recently and shown no sign of altering your behavior. Please take the next week to consider how you can participate in discussion without being rude to people.
 
Because they are formulaic and characterless. They lose a sense of neighborhoods and place, and typically are very bad at generating community. Which of these is the more interesting place to live and explore?
My answer would be that New York is one of the most character-filled cities in the United States, with very strong neighborhoods and places, but, of course, has a very strong grid system. Meanwhile, most suburbs have no grid and are deliberately designed to have complicated internal road structures, but lack much of any sense of neighborhood or place, and rarely have much community sentiment. Other factors than the arrangement of roads seems to dictate the health or sickness of local communities, so why not choose a system that facilitates easy movement?
 
I think, the failure of grid cities often has less to do with the grid pattern itself, but rather the lack of good public transportation and mixed use areas (at least in American cities). New York is the stark example of this to certain extents, it by far as the best public transportation system among major US cities despite it being very bad compared to European or Asian ones, but this allows good neighborhoods with real identities to develop.

New York not absorbing all the subsequent boroughs leaves for huge alternatives in its layout. Also if that godforsaken man Robert Moses had his way, Manhattan would have a giant freeway through it.

Getting into post-1900 here a tad, but if you prevent the automotive lobby from gaining power post-WWII, the United States might continue its pattern of trolley suburbs and invest in rail more and more, making the urban sprawl of a lot of cities less prevalent, especially those in California/Texas where a car is necessary to get around.

I am not well versed in this topic either, but could the skyscraper take off in Europe? I would hate to see it, but with this thought exercise I do not see why the major cities of Europe couldn't adopt the skyscraper and look a la New York or Chicago.
 
My answer would be that New York is one of the most character-filled cities in the United States, with very strong neighborhoods and places, but, of course, has a very strong grid system. Meanwhile, most suburbs have no grid and are deliberately designed to have complicated internal road structures, but lack much of any sense of neighborhood or place, and rarely have much community sentiment. Other factors than the arrangement of roads seems to dictate the health or sickness of local communities, so why not choose a system that facilitates easy movement?
Of course there is plenty more than road layout that contributes to character: interesting architectural styles, ethnic mixtures, community areas etc. But I don't think you're comparing apples and oranges mixing one of the largest cities in the world with American suburbs. I'd also point out the most famous "character" neighborhood in New York is Greenwich village, which, while a grid system, has a mix of diagonals thrown in there, which contributes to its more interesting feel. Neighborhoods in other world megacities like London and Tokyo have far more sense of neighborhoods and local communities. There's just something that makes for more of a blend of small and large when you can't see round the next corner vs being able to see a straight line down the entire metropolis.

I'd also reject the idea that the grid system is the best for easy movement. Typically they are based around traffic light intersections, which are terrible for congestion. The best system for smooth traffic would probably be some sort of hexagonal lattice with roundabouts.
 
I'd also reject the idea that the grid system is the best for easy movement. Typically they are based around traffic light intersections, which are terrible for congestion. The best system for smooth traffic would probably be some sort of hexagonal lattice with roundabouts.
For walking, most complex road networks are good enough compared to the inefficient cul-de-sac, but grid systems are the ideal.

Source (a full grid is marginally more optimal than the system on the right)

For any public transit, grids are easily the best layout. Streetcars, elevated trains, and subways can't turn well (and even bus lines are best without many turns), and it's very easy on a grid to run a line straight down one street. The hexagonal grid or any other alternative (including the network shown above) cannot do this.
 
I just like a grid system because it is easy to orient oneself. I was thrilled when I moved to Pasadena (California) in 1983, because the roads were north-south/east-west grids, and there were the mountains always marking north (well, barring the worst smog days, where one could barely discern them! I believe Los Angeles has greatly improved the smog situation since the early '80s). I never got lost.
 
For walking, most complex road networks are good enough compared to the inefficient cul-de-sac, but grid systems are the ideal.

Source (a full grid is marginally more optimal than the system on the right)

For any public transit, grids are easily the best layout. Streetcars, elevated trains, and subways can't turn well (and even bus lines are best without many turns), and it's very easy on a grid to run a line straight down one street. The hexagonal grid or any other alternative (including the network shown above) cannot do this.
Most cul-de-sac’s (at least in Europe) have walk/bike paths between each other so only cars are the long way around
 
I am not well versed in this topic either, but could the skyscraper take off in Europe? I would hate to see it, but with this thought exercise I do not see why the major cities of Europe couldn't adopt the skyscraper and look a la New York or Chicago.
This happened in the city of Frankfurt am Main.
Glad that it didn't happen in most other cities in Europe.

 
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