Notices
Results 1 to 24 of 24
Like Tree2Likes
  • 1 Post By Harold14370

Thread: Why is a circular city design more "efficient"?

  1. #1 Why is a circular city design more "efficient"? 
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,150
    Imo, the Venus Project adheres to many good ideas, but one thing I cant figure out is why they say

    "Its geometrically elegant and efficient circular arrangement will be surrounded by, and incorporated into the city design, parks and lovely gardens."
    I can understand a circular urban design as being perceived as elegant, beauty is in the eye of the beholder after all,
    but what is the efficient aspect or advantage about a circular design that I am missing? Are logistics/movements shorter or easier to coordinate? What's is the angle that I am missing?

    EDIT:

    Heres a link

    http://www.thevenusproject.com/technology/city-systems

    I
    t makes sense to place frequently visited locations in the middle of the city/urban node.

    I would think its more efficient to have a skyscraper or large building in the centre, instead of a dome that would presumably have less space for public services than a larger building would?

    Also I think it makes more sense to have the apartment buildings closer to the centre than single house residential areas.

    It might even be more efficient, to have in the centre a cluster of building in which you had commercial/leisure floors at the bottom, office floors in the middle and apartments above, and hydroponic floors at the top and some utility-ish processes in the basement floors.




    Last edited by icewendigo; August 21st, 2013 at 12:37 PM.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  2.  
     

  3. #2  
    Malignant Pimple shlunka's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Dogbox in front of Dywyddyr's house.
    Posts
    1,785
    Ease of intersections? I'm not terribly sure, when I think about it, a circular maze of the same proportions as a square maze is more difficult to navigate through.


    "MODERATOR NOTE : We don't entertain trolls here, not even in the trash can. Banned." -Markus Hanke
    Reply With Quote  
     

  4. #3  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    8,416
    I'd think circular designs would automatically minimize the length of all the transportation, water, sewer lines--less to build, less to maintain--hence efficient.


    They remind me of the many of the smaller towns in Germany, tight communities often framed inside or beside old castle defensive berms, surrounded by fields of mustard and other crops.
    Last edited by Lynx_Fox; August 21st, 2013 at 12:38 PM.
    Meteorologist/Naturalist & Retired Soldier
    “The Holy Land is everywhere” Black Elk
    Reply With Quote  
     

  5. #4  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    2,227
    In general circular designs place common often-used and dense facilities (mass transit, shopping, schools) near the center, then use very simple transit systems (sidewalks, bike paths, light rail) to reach the center of the city. This puts most people very close (in time) to the center, and ensures that travel to the city center is relatively easy.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  6. #5  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    2,227
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    I'd think circular designs would automatically minimize the length of all the transportation, water, sewer lines--less to build, less to maintain--hence efficient.
    Agreed. However, no such design I have ever seen places sewage treatment plants, generation facilities or water towers in the more-valuable real estate in the center of the city. They are put elsewhere, hence negating any positive effects of short distribution lines. (More often they are completely overlooked by utopian planners.)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  7. #6  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,150
    Thank you all for these are interesting observations.


    no such design I have ever seen places sewage treatment plants, generation facilities or water towers in the more-valuable real estate in the center of the city.
    Couldnt sewage treatment plants be located underground and beneath parks? Many downtown cities have underground parking, but presumably there would be very little need for massive fleets of cars sitting idle all day, so you could build some of the infrastructure underground beneath the centre of the city (since these dont need windows or views). It would also be nice to have a few parks, but you could have a park on top of a utility building or build the utility underground and have a roof that looks like a park.



    Are there any ideas or concepts that would make sense in a space colony (like mars, where efficiency is an absolute must) that could be valuable to design a 21st century city?


    I imagine that a colony on Mars would not have toilet paper but use water/air based cleaning systems and that water cabinet waste water would go to a sewer treatment plant design to provide nutrients for hydroponics/agriculture... (at least Im figuring they wont be importing animal shit all the way from earth, and since shit would be very rare/valuable on Mars I think they would have to recycle local organic matter as best they could )
    Reply With Quote  
     

  8. #7  
    Suspended
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    8,795
    I think it would be a nightmare. Manufacturing any curved building materials or putting curved pieces together would always be more expensive than straight pieces. Components farther from the center of the city would have different radius of curvature, making standardization that much more difficult. Utilizing circular spaces is a lot harder than rectangular spaces. A lot of the space would be wasted. Efficient? I think not.
    danhanegan likes this.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  9. #8  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,150
    I think it would be a nightmare. Manufacturing any curved building materials or putting curved pieces together would always be more expensive than straight pieces. Components farther from the center of the city would have different radius of curvature, making standardization that much more difficult. Utilizing circular spaces is a lot harder than rectangular spaces. A lot of the space would be wasted. Efficient? I think not.


    So maybe a circular-esque city (frequent-visit-logistical buildings near centre) but without curved buildings?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  10. #9  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    8,416
    Quote Originally Posted by billvon View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    I'd think circular designs would automatically minimize the length of all the transportation, water, sewer lines--less to build, less to maintain--hence efficient.
    Agreed. However, no such design I have ever seen places sewage treatment plants, generation facilities or water towers in the more-valuable real estate in the center of the city. They are put elsewhere, hence negating any positive effects of short distribution lines. (More often they are completely overlooked by utopian planners.)

    Yes it would be ideal if some of those plants could be inside the city, but even if run from the outside to a hub, there's still an advantage of less distance to cover for a circular city. The smaller the area taken by the population, the shorter the lines, regardless of where the electrical, sewer, water treatment or any other supplying feature are located.
    Meteorologist/Naturalist & Retired Soldier
    “The Holy Land is everywhere” Black Elk
    Reply With Quote  
     

  11. #10  
    Anti-Crank AlexG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    2,809
    Boston is a city basically laid out in circles. If anybody thinks the design of Boston is even faintly efficient, they are both insane, and have never been to Boston.

    Downtown Manhattan is laid out in a grid. MUCH more efficient.
    Its the way nature is!
    If you dont like it, go somewhere else....
    To another universe, where the rules are simpler
    Philosophically more pleasing, more psychologically easy
    Prof Richard Feynman (1979) .....

    Das ist nicht nur nicht richtig, es ist nicht einmal falsch!"
    Reply With Quote  
     

  12. #11  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    2,227
    Quote Originally Posted by AlexG View Post
    Boston is a city basically laid out in circles.
    Boston is a city laid out at random.

    Downtown Manhattan is laid out in a grid. MUCH more efficient.
    Have you ever tried to drive in Manhattan?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  13. #12  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    2,227
    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370 View Post
    I think it would be a nightmare. Manufacturing any curved building materials or putting curved pieces together would always be more expensive than straight pieces. Components farther from the center of the city would have different radius of curvature, making standardization that much more difficult. Utilizing circular spaces is a lot harder than rectangular spaces. A lot of the space would be wasted.
    In general no curved pieces are used. All structures are still straight - buildings, pipelines, wires etc. Just the overall form of the city is radial.


    Quote Originally Posted by icewendigo View Post
    Couldnt sewage treatment plants be located underground and beneath parks?
    There are a lot of advantages to putting sewage treatment at the surface:
    Easier venting of noxious fumes (do you really want a park to smell like a sewage treatment plant?)
    Availability of sunlight (excellent drying/sterilizing agent)
    Availability of open space to spread waste

    Many downtown cities have underground parking, but presumably there would be very little need for massive fleets of cars sitting idle all day, so you could build some of the infrastructure underground beneath the centre of the city (since these dont need windows or views). It would also be nice to have a few parks, but you could have a park on top of a utility building or build the utility underground and have a roof that looks like a park.
    You can indeed put a lot of stuff underground but it's a lot more expensive. Only when real estate prices are sky high does it make economic sense - which is why mass transit in a place like Portland is above ground, and in Manhattan below ground.



    Are there any ideas or concepts that would make sense in a space colony (like mars, where efficiency is an absolute must) that could be valuable to design a 21st century city?


    I imagine that a colony on Mars would not have toilet paper but use water/air based cleaning systems and that water cabinet waste water would go to a sewer treatment plant design to provide nutrients for hydroponics/agriculture... (at least Im figuring they wont be importing animal shit all the way from earth, and since shit would be very rare/valuable on Mars I think they would have to recycle local organic matter as best they could )
    Reply With Quote  
     

  14. #13  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    8,416
    Quote Originally Posted by billvon View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by AlexG View Post
    Boston is a city basically laid out in circles.
    Boston is a city laid out at random.

    Downtown Manhattan is laid out in a grid. MUCH more efficient.
    Have you ever tried to drive in Manhattan?
    Boston's inner city is quite circular. It's damn hard for visitors to get around in though because it's confusing as all get out.

    I suppose a grid inside a circle would probably combine the advantages of best use of space with most understandable addressing system.
    Meteorologist/Naturalist & Retired Soldier
    “The Holy Land is everywhere” Black Elk
    Reply With Quote  
     

  15. #14  
    Anti-Crank AlexG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    2,809
    Quote Originally Posted by billvon View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by AlexG View Post
    Boston is a city basically laid out in circles.
    Boston is a city laid out at random.

    Take a look at a Boston street map. Downtown boston are all circular streets.


    Downtown Manhattan is laid out in a grid. MUCH more efficient.
    Have you ever tried to drive in Manhattan?
    Often. The grid is much more efficient, it's just in really shitty shape. If NYC streets had ever been maintained, they'd be much easier to pass over.
    Its the way nature is!
    If you dont like it, go somewhere else....
    To another universe, where the rules are simpler
    Philosophically more pleasing, more psychologically easy
    Prof Richard Feynman (1979) .....

    Das ist nicht nur nicht richtig, es ist nicht einmal falsch!"
    Reply With Quote  
     

  16. #15  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,150
    Why is a grid more efficient?
    What aspects are better?

    If you design a city so that monorails are the transit, cars are not used and bikes walking (along with elevators, escalators and walking strips) is the way to get to a place, how is a grid better (or a circle)?

    (Imo either are better than random disorganised configuration)

    Btw wouldnt some sort of pneumatic distribution system for objects reduce the number of travel around?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  17. #16  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    8,416
    I think they only inherent advantage to grids is they are relatively easy for folks to find their way around--letters (or trees named after them) one direction, and numbers perpendicular...that sort of thing. Obviously the outside parameter is most efficient as a circle, though a square isn't much worse. Of course cities aren't really built that way, even planned ones have to work around natural features in the terrain.
    Meteorologist/Naturalist & Retired Soldier
    “The Holy Land is everywhere” Black Elk
    Reply With Quote  
     

  18. #17  
    Theatre Whore babe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Resident of Big Island of Hawai'i since 2003, and in Bayside, Ca. since 1981, Humboldt since 1977
    Posts
    13,159
    Lynx_Fox, I think you hit the nail on the head......
    Reply With Quote  
     

  19. #18  
    Brassica oleracea Strange's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    喫茶店
    Posts
    17,036
    This was the idea behind the Garden City movement in the UK
    Garden Cities by Ebenezer Howard | SCOD Public Blog

    http://www.city-analysis.net/wp-cont...arden-city.gif
    http://www.city-analysis.net/wp-cont...ial-cities.jpg

    I don't think any of the cities actually stuck to it accurately, especially as they grew later.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Of course cities aren't really built that way, even planned ones have to work around natural features in the terrain.
    Apparently, only one tree was cut down when Letchworth was built.
    ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat
    Reply With Quote  
     

  20. #19  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    14,168
    Milton Keynes, in England, is famous for its roundabouts and cows. (I can't remember what the cows have to do with it.) I arrived there once, by accident, having intended to go to Nottingham from Gloucester and missed the turn off because of an interesting conversation. (Those who know the route will realise the conversation has to be really interesting to make such an error and then not to notice it till one is around Milton Keynes.) There are so many roundabouts of identical design that one was able to use them as a training ground for how fast one could drive round them, edging the speed up on each roundabout. Consequently I have fond feelings for planned cities in general.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  21. #20  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,150
    I laughed when I read "Home for Inebriates" and Epileptic Farms (and Insane Asylum)


    (I still like the general idea of a garden city etc, I just found the labels amusing)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  22. #21  
    Anti-Crank AlexG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    2,809
    In Nashua, New Hampshire, they put in a roundabout on a main road back in 2003. It's a nice looking roundabout, with a central grass area surrounded by granite edging. It was designed by a French team of engineers. Apparently, in France, they don't have 53 foot long tractor trailor trucks. This roundabout has taken out countless air brake systems, just scraping them right off the bottom of the trucks as they attempt to make a circle that's way to tight.

    But it's a pretty roundabout, looks like it should have an english Bobby in shorts standing in the center waving traffic around.
    Its the way nature is!
    If you dont like it, go somewhere else....
    To another universe, where the rules are simpler
    Philosophically more pleasing, more psychologically easy
    Prof Richard Feynman (1979) .....

    Das ist nicht nur nicht richtig, es ist nicht einmal falsch!"
    Reply With Quote  
     

  23. #22  
    Moderator Moderator
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    city of wine and roses
    Posts
    6,222
    We use roundabouts a lot here. The too-tight-a-circle problem is solved by having them sort of two tiered. The outer edge is paved and is not quite as high as a normal gutter. Buses, fire trucks, ambulances and normal trucks can drive more or less straight over that edge if they need to, but need to slow down a bit. Normal cars go round to avoid the bump.

    We don't have very many on the major roads that take heavy vehicles, though.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
    "nature is like a game of Jenga; you never know which brick you pull out will cause the whole stack to collapse" Lucy Cooke
    Reply With Quote  
     

  24. #23  
    Theatre Whore babe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Resident of Big Island of Hawai'i since 2003, and in Bayside, Ca. since 1981, Humboldt since 1977
    Posts
    13,159
    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    We use roundabouts a lot here. The too-tight-a-circle problem is solved by having them sort of two tiered. The outer edge is paved and is not quite as high as a normal gutter. Buses, fire trucks, ambulances and normal trucks can drive more or less straight over that edge if they need to, but need to slow down a bit. Normal cars go round to avoid the bump.

    We don't have very many on the major roads that take heavy vehicles, though.
    Use them in Humboldt too.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  25. #24  
    Theatre Whore babe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Resident of Big Island of Hawai'i since 2003, and in Bayside, Ca. since 1981, Humboldt since 1977
    Posts
    13,159
    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by John Galt View Post
    Milton Keynes, in England, is famous for its roundabouts and cows. (I can't remember what the cows have to do with it.) I arrived there once, by accident, having intended to go to Nottingham from Gloucester and missed the turn off because of an interesting conversation. (Those who know the route will realise the conversation has to be really interesting to make such an error and then not to notice it till one is around Milton Keynes.) There are so many roundabouts of identical design that one was able to use them as a training ground for how fast one could drive round them, edging the speed up on each roundabout. Consequently I have fond feelings for planned cities in general.

    "Note for Americans and other aliens: Milton Keynes is a new city
    approximately halfway between London and Birmingham. It was built to be
    modern, efficient, healthy, and, all in all, a pleasant place to live.
    Many Britons find this amusing." -- T.Pratchett and N.Gaiman, Good Omens
    I do not look like ET!
    Reply With Quote  
     

Similar Threads

  1. "Force due to circular motion"
    By sagarkaran in forum Physics
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: February 21st, 2013, 11:08 AM
  2. "Dating" posts split from "Purpose of life" thread
    By Christopher Ball in forum Earth Sciences
    Replies: 90
    Last Post: October 11th, 2011, 10:35 AM
  3. intelligent design and the probable "G.U.T".
    By streamSystems in forum Philosophy
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: August 19th, 2007, 05:33 PM
  4. "Intelligent" Design and other Anti-Science Ra
    By REV ROSWELL in forum Pseudoscience
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: August 17th, 2006, 08:53 PM
  5. Why is "creationism" and Intelligent Design"
    By charles brough in forum Scientific Study of Religion
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: November 26th, 2005, 11:38 AM
Bookmarks
Bookmarks
Posting Permissions
  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •