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GPHY 101 Lecture Notes - Milton Keynes Grid Road System, Urban Ecology, Technological Change

Course Code
GPHY 101
Anne M C Godlewska

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Model social sciences on the sciences about urban ecology (natural process)
Infrastructure decline: lower income people leave because they can’t afford it
Urban redevelopment increased value of land
Value of land increased, even pushing residence out couldn’t afford rent
Uniform style with lawn and grid roads between 1950 and today
Rapidly changing rural landscape: coincides with urban slums and social misery
Social forced behind rise of suburbia
Industrialization follows cheap labour and dense transportation systems to the city centre
Those who can afford it move out to avoid noise and dirt
Followed by service industries and jobs
Growth in the suburbs and decline in the city centre
Influx of immigrants and poor blacks
They couldn’t afford to move out
Exodus of wealthy
Influx of more poor
Decline of infrastructure
City taxes raised pushing middle classes too
Downward spiral for city because gov’t looked for local interests only
Great Migration from the South during WWII
Over time poor housing was destroyed to build express ways
Urban poor need more health care and social services but they’re too poor
Technological change
First 80 years marked public transportation
o Walking
o Ferry
o Omnibus: horses dying on streets and congestion
o Railroad: only for wealthy
3 miles out cause railroads needed space
Railroad suburbs 50% affluent population, others served them
o Street car: horse drawn
Triple decker: lived at bottom and rented the two upper floors
o Earn more to move out
Balloon Frame House
o Expensive beams
o Softwood lumber
o Developed in 1830s due to low skill requirement
Automobile Suburbs and the Drive In Life Style
- Principle shaper of modern suburb
- Originally an elite vehicle
- Beat out local rail transportation in 1930s
- Taxing population instead of industries
o Pressure groups: Tire manufacturers, part suppliers, land developers
- Public transportation was essentially a public venture
- Human life opportunity cost of introducing cars to the road
Lynching: 1889-1918
- Blacks prevented from following the Whites into Suburbs
- They didn’t receive mortgages and no help for them buying their first houses
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