Does density make people happy?

Is there a ‘good’ and a ‘bad’ kind of density?

Is density for its own sake an improvement to a city?

Gordon Clark has an opinion piece over at the Vancouver Province about density and it’s effect on people in the city.

Perhaps I’d feel better about all the growth if someone could point to some positives. But where are all the natural history museums, art galleries and other great cultural features common to other large cities? Despite the growth, we’re not acquiring any of the cultural attributes of large cities that at least provide some trade-off to a hectic life in an urban jungle. Let’s face it, we’re an artistic wasteland compared with truly great cities. How are all those condo towers blocking the spectacular views of the North Shore mountains and the ocean making us more interesting?

What do you think? Are community and culture getting shafted in the race to density and growth or are long term Vancouverites just grouchy and looking at the past through rose coloured glasses?

 

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chilled
Member
chilled

Some of the happiest people I know are also the most dense as well. In conclusion? Yes, density makes people happy.

cris
Guest
cris

could be Keynesian Vietcong?

TPFKAA
Guest
TPFKAA

It is not density, per se, that makes people grouchy. It is the rate of change of density that makes people grouchy.

Think of it as an analogue of “culture shock.” Many Vancouverites who have been here 9 years or more are suffering from “density shock.”

Son of Ponzi
Guest
Son of Ponzi

If you’ve ever boarded a train at a Shanghai train station, you’d get what density means.
Not everybody’s cup of British tea.

Son of Ponzi
Guest
Son of Ponzi

When I came to Canada 40 years ago, people kept about a foot of distance at the Safeway line-ups.
Now it’s much more crowded and the cashiers don’t meet your eyes any more when they hand you your receipt.
Also, they used to try to pronounce your name from your credit card.

Reality Check
Guest
Reality Check

son of Ponzi:

in checkout Lines, I get people bumping into my back (all that are new to this country)………then i give angry stares…lol

budding into line is an accepted way of life overseas.

UBC in crisis mode
Guest
UBC in crisis mode

Anyone is tracking Van West sales? Only 2 SFH sales so far(last month total SFH sale is 136). They are not buying!?

Son of Ponzi
Guest
Son of Ponzi

#12
That’s been my experience when traveling in Asia.
When you’re traveling you’re are accepting it as part of the experience.
But when I’m back home, I’d like it a little more leisurely.
Good thing, though, I don’t have to travel to Asia any more for the experience.

Son of Ponzi
Guest
Son of Ponzi

#13
They are not buying.
Buyers are waiting for IIP to get desperate.

aa4
Guest
aa4
I’m not really sure why, but Vancouver seems the most uptight, unhappy, stressed people I’ve ever seen. I went on a year long work assignment in a small town in BC, and I thought I was on a different planet. People were calm and sociable.. people I didn’t even know stopped to talk to me. Meanwhile in Vancouver you can barely say a sentence and people are glancing at their watch with a worried look on their face.. knowing they are going to get in shit from their master for being 2 minutes late. I also saw the women are 20 times more chatty/flirty in the small town with its calm and relaxed atmosphere. Probably for many women after working 2 jobs to make the mortgage, and being under massive pressure and stress at work, threatened with being replaced.. they… Read more »
Bull! Bull! Bull!
Guest
Bull! Bull! Bull!
Shibor this!
Guest
Shibor this!

@13

Thank you for posting the Van West numbers.

I’m curious about whether West Van has also seen a dramatic change in sales.

Technically the IIP applications are still getting processed until the end of June. So the tap won’t completely turn off until then. But maybe developers, flippers and waiting applicants have paused their purchases.

space889
Member
space889

In general, people get more stressed out due to money issues than anything else. Making the average salary of $50K(??) and renting an ok above ground acommodation is going take up a lot of money. Since the place is probably in Burnaby if not Surrey, add in 45 mins to 1 hour commute time each way means you are spending 1.5hrs to 2 hours on the road to and from at least a 9 hour work day. Rent, transit pass, car costs, and food is going to eat up probably 80% of the take home pay of $50K already. Off course you are stressed, pissed off, and in a hurry. Add in the traditional closed off social circle habits of Vancouverites, what do you really expect?

space889
Member
space889
Forgot to mention also most people are trapped in a dead-end job or have to work with bosses/people who they think are morons and don’t deserve the job & pay, it’s perfect for mental anguish. Add in the daily reminder of just how poor you are with all the in your face luxury stores where you can’t afford anything in the store, fancy cars on the street that you can’t afford to even rent, and immigrants decked out in brand name cloths and bags tha probably cost more than your monthly salary, is it really surprising people are hostile in this town? Also, Vancouver is not a major city. The entire metro Van has like what? 1.5M people?? We can’t support that many arts institutions like museums, opera houses, etc in the first place. Add in the low income/discretion spending… Read more »
Ryan
Guest
Ryan

Highrise Condos are the slums of the future. nuff said.

space889
Member
space889

@aa4 – I’m sure Van women would be just as chatty and flirty if not more than those small town girls if you show you got it – the luxury car & watch, the latest designer yoga cloth/suit, a prestigious house in Van West/West Van that’s owned free and clear, ideally a couple investment condos, a gold Amex card, nice body built, and oh yeah, all you really want in life is get in touch with your inner self via yoga & mediation, only eat organics from Whole Foods, culture tastes for fine dining & wine, helping the poor & community, and wanting a nice stable family with that special someone. You will find Van women throwing themselves at you cuz the biggest complaint for Van women is that there are just no good single men out there.

space889
Member
space889

@Ryan – NYC and a lot of eastern US seaboard cities are full of highrises? So are many European cities, Japanese cities, Singapore, Taiwan, and HK, and now middle east. Many have had high-rises for decades and hasn’t yet turn into slums…..

How is this kind of claim any different in principle from bulls claim that planeload of rich Chinese are comming over with suitcases of $$$ to buy up all of our RE??

Melba
Guest
Melba

….you can barely say a sentence and people are glancing at their watch with a worried look on their face….

It’s because they know if they don’t get inside in a few minutes they’ll get wet. Vancouver’s always been a bit of a unfriendly place: 10 months of depressing rain does that to people.

Son of Ponzi
Guest
Son of Ponzi

Highrises in European Cities?
Frabkfurt has a few.
None in the Centre of Vienna, Paris, London, Rome.

Melba
Guest
Melba

….Highrise Condos are the slums of the future. nuff said….

Downtown Vancouver is already referred to as: ‘The Projects’.

Son of Ponzi
Guest
Son of Ponzi

%23
ever lived in an older highrise in HongKong?
With an iron gate before every department entrance.

Bull! Bull! Bull!
Guest
Bull! Bull! Bull!

when the government ended IIP they created an experiment for us. It’s up to us to see if we want to learn the lessons from this experiment.

crikey
Guest
crikey

Density? Destiny? I can now imagine how prominent local condo developwhores must regularly court the powers that be.

“Vancouver….. I am your density!”
(Picture that clumsy character from “Back to the Future”)

registered
Member
registered

It’s unclear a real problem exists. The Canadian districts with the three highest population densities are all in Toronto:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_city_districts_by_population_density

No other Canadian makes the ranking. No Canadian city proper makes the global top fifty for population density. Vancouver has as little as 1/20 the density of the front runners; cities in India, the Philippines and surprisingly France.

Math Challenge
Guest
Math Challenge

I would like to know the answer to the following question but I am not smart enough to figure it out.

How expensive are houses compared to prices of the past?

Prior to 2008, interest rates were higher but prices were lower. I would love to see a graph of the final cost of the average property (principal repayment + total mortgage interest) over the last few decades. If anyone can figure this out, I will award you 500 VCI points.

Thanks

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