Monday, May 9, 2016

Population Density

As mentioned previously, I have zero expertise in urban planning.  As such, the following should be taken with a grain of salt.

America's current "hot spots" seem to fall into one of two categories:
a) The dense, vibrant, painful-for-cars model, or
b) The not as dense, brand new strip mall, 8-lane road model

More established cities such as San Francisco, Boston, and Chicago exemplify the first model, while relatively "newer" and rapidly growing cities such as Tampa, Raleigh, and Dallas exemplify the second model.  Both models are clearly attractive to different people.

As Rochester rebuilds and rebrands itself in the 21st century, there is no debate that our bones are better suited for the first model.  In fact, despite immense focus on population loss in the city of Rochester, the city continues to have one of the highest population densities among America's largest cities.  In other words, as downtown is redone, it seems prudent to listen to the voices emphasizing pedestrians, bicycles, and public transit.  These same voices may make life for the automobile somewhat unpleasant, but the outcome could be remarkably agreeable.

Among the top 105 cities by population, here are the top 20 percent in terms of population density (i.e. population per square mile) as of 2010:

  1. New York City - 27,012
  2. San Francisco - 17,179
  3. Jersey City, NJ - 16,737
  4. Boston - 12,793
  5. Santa Ana, CA - 11,901
  6. Chicago - 11,842
  7. Miami - 11,539
  8. Newark, NJ - 11,458
  9. Philadelphia - 11,379
  10. Hialeah, FL - 10,474
  11. Washington, DC - 9,856
  12. Long Beach, CA - 9,191
  13. Los Angeles - 8.092
  14. Baltimore - 7,672
  15. Seattle - 7,251
  16. Minneapolis - 7,088
  17. Oakland - 7,004
  18. Anaheim, CA - 6,748
  19. Buffalo - 6,471
  20. Milwaukee - 6,188
  21. Rochester, NY - 5,885

1 comment:

  1. I think Rochester has a great mix of options. We have the dense, vibrant city, the not as dense, strip mall suburbs, and further out you can live in a rural area. The area has a mix of feels too (think East End, Fairport, Canandaigua, etc.).