Geography of film and TV production hubs in the USA/Canada

Created using maps.google.com

The list below identifies the top movie and television production locations in the United States and Canada based on the number of filming sound stages in the market. The numbers provided include those sound stages that are currently in operation, under construction, expanding, or are planned in the near future. As a result, the numbers provided may fluctuate when the list is updated periodically based on new sound stage development projects being announced, approved, delayed, and/or canceled. The numbers shown for each market do not include flex space, mill areas, insert stages, sound stages used for sound/audio recordings, nor sound stages with a footprint of less than 2000 square feet.

Aerial image of Warner Bros. Studios in Burbank, CA – Source: axionimages.com

Clearly, Los Angeles/Southern California remains the preeminent film and television production center with nearly four times as many sound stages as its nearest competitor. In the meantime, Vancouver, Atlanta, Toronto, Albuquerque, Austin, and New Orleans have grown rapidly to become important markets for film and television production in the United States and Canada. Orlando, other the other hand has seen a reduction in its position since Disney converted the sound stages at its Hollywood Studios into theme park uses.

Source: 99designs.com
Source: suwaneemagazine.com

Other cities who may soon join this list based on information found while researching this post include Nashville, Victoria/Vancouver Island, and Boston. As noted above, the list will be updated as necessary to reflect ongoing changes and trends. As always, any corrections, suggestions, or additions to this list would be most appreciated. Peace!

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City/Region Name = Number of sound stages that are currently in operation, under construction, expanding, or are planned in the near future.

  1. Los Angeles, California = 434 sound stages

2. New York City, New York-New Jersey = 118 sound stages

3. Vancouver, British Columbia = 98 sound stages

4. Atlanta/Athens, Georgia = 82 sound stages

5. Toronto/Hamilton, Ontario = 58 sound stages

6. Chicago, Illinois = 52 sound stages

7. Albuquerque/Santa Fe, New Mexico = 37 sound stages

8. Austin/San Marcos, Texas = 36 sound stages

9. New Orleans, Louisiana = 27 sound stages

10. Montreal, Quebec = 24 sound stages

11-12. Miami and San Francisco Bay Area = 16 sound stages each

13. Orlando, Florida = 14 sound stages

14-16. Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Las Vegas, Nevada; and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania = 11 sound stages each

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SOURCES:

Posted in art, business, cities, commerce, Communications, culture, digital communications, economic development, entertainment, entrepreneurship, film, fun, geography, history, industry, infrastructure, land use, Maps, marketing, movies, pictures, placemaking, planning, spatial design, Statistics, technology, Television, theaters, tourism, Trade, Travel, urban planning, video, zoning | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

North America’s tallest bridge towers and pylons (Las torres y pilones de puentes más altos de América del Norte)

Puente Tampico in Mexico – Source: megaconstrucciones.net

The following list identifies the tallest bridge towers and pylons in North America. Such support structures are principally found on cable-stayed and suspension bridges and the height is measured from ground or water level to the top of the tower/pylon. The list does not include bridge piers nor arches. A minimum height of 200 feet was required for inclusion in the list.

Golden Gate Bridge – photo by the blogpost author

Metropolitan areas with the most bridges represented on this list include:

  • NewYork City = 11
  • Vancouver = 5
  • Philadelphia = 4
  • San Francisco/Oakland = 4
  • Santo Domingo = 3
  • Detroit/Windsor, Halifax, Los Angeles, Panama City, Washington, Huntington, St. Louis, Quebec City, and Louisville = 2 each

Countries/territories represented on the list are Canada, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Panama, Puerto Rico, and the United States.

Those bridge shown in bold italics, the blog author has driven/ridden or walked across.

Impressive Puente Mézcala with the tallest towers/pylons in North America – Source: megaconsturcciones.net

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  1. Puente Mezcala (1993) – Mártir de Cuilapán, Mexico = 774 feet

2. Golden Gate Bridge (1937) – San Francisco, California = 746 feet

3. Puente El Carrizo (2013) – El Palmito, Mexico = 741 feet

4. Gordie Howe International Bridge (2024) – Detroit-Windsor, Michigan/Ontario = 722 feet

5. Puente Atlantico (2019) – Colon, Panama = 697 feet

6. Verrazano Narrows Bridge (1964) – New York City, New York = 693 feet

7-8. George Washington Bridge (1931) – New York City, New York/New Jersey and Puente Centenario (2004) – Panama City, Panama = 604 feet

9. Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge (2005) – Charleston, South Carolina = 575 feet

10. Pont Champlain (2019) – Montreal, Quebec = 558 feet

11. Puente Baluarte (2012) – Concordia, Mexico = 554 feet

12. Mackinac Bridge (1957) – Mackinaw City, MI = 552 feet

13. New Corpus Christi Harbor Bridge (under construction) – Corpus Christi, Texas = 538 feet

14. San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge western part (1936) – San Francisco-Oakland, California = 526 feet

15. San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge eastern part (2013) – San Francisco-Oakland, California = 525 feet

16-17. Puente de la Unidad (2003) – Monterrey, Mexico and Audubon Bridge (2011) – New Roads, Louisiana = 520 feet

18. Long Beach International Gateway (2020) – Long Beach, California = 515 feet

19. Tacoma Narrows Bridge (1950/2007) – Tacoma, Washington = 510 feet

20. Alex Fraser Bridge (1986) – Vancouver, British Columbia = 505 feet

21. Sidney Lanier Bridge (2003) – Brunswick, Georgia = 486 feet

22. Dames Point Bridge (1989) – Jacksonville, Florida = 471 feet

23. Dean Bridge (proposed) – Arkansas City, Arkansas/Mississippi = 450 feet

24. Penobscot Narrows Bridge (2006) – Prospect-Verona, Maine= 447 feet

25. Delaware Memorial Bridges (1951/1968)- Wilmington, Delaware/New Jersey = 440 feet

26. Sunshine Skyway (1987) – St. Petersburg, Florida = 430 feet

27. Fred Hartman Bridge (1995) – Houston, Texas = 426 feet

28. Greenville Bridge (2010) – Greenville, Mississippi/Arkansas = 425 feet

29. Tappan Zee (Mario Cuomo) Bridge (2017) – Tarrytown, New York = 419 feet

30. Carquinez Strait Bridge (2003) – Vallejo, California = 410 feet

31. Skybridge (1990) – Vancouver, British Columbia = 404 feet

33. St. Johns Bridge (1931) – Portland, Oregon = 401 feet (with spires)

33-36. Stan Musial Bridge (2014) – St. Louis, Missouri/Illinois; Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge (2012) – Dallas, Texas; Hale Boggs Memorial Bridge (1983) – New Orleans Louisiana = 400 feet; and Glass City Skyway (2007) – Toledo, Ohio = 400 feet

37. Chesapeake Bay Bridge (WB – 1973) – Annapolis, Maryland = 397 feet

38. Ambassador Bridge (1929) – Detroit-Windsor, Michigan/Ontario = 386 feet

39. Ben Franklin Bridge (1926) – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania/New Jersey = 385 feet

40. Pont Pierre Laporte (1970) – Quebec City, Quebec = 381 feet

41. Walt Whitman Bridge (1957) – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania/New Jersey = 378 feet

42. Bronx-Whitestone Bridge (1939) – New York City, NewYork = 377 feet

43. William Natcher Bridge (2002) – Owensboro, Kentucky/Indiana = 374 feet

44-45. Great River Bridge (1994) – Burlington, Iowa/Illinois and East Huntington Bridg4 (1985) – Huntington, West Virginia/Ohio = 370 feet

46. Vincent Thomas Bridge (1963) – Los Angeles, California = 365 feet

47. Lions Gate Bridge (1938) – Vancouver, British Columbia = 364 feet

48. Puente Tampico (1988) – Tampico, Mexico = 361 feet

49-50. Port Mann Bridge (2015) – Coquitlam, British Columbia and Veterans Memorial Bridge (1990) – Steubenville-Weirton, Ohio/West Virginia = 360 feet

51-53. Chesapeake Bay Bridge (EB – 1952) – Annapolis, Maryland; Puenta Vidalta (2013) – Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico; and Puente Mauricio Báez (2007) – Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic = 354 feet

54. Cochrane-Africatown Bridge (1991) – Mobile, Alabama = 350 feet

55. Throgs Neck Bridge (1961) – New York City, New York = 346 feet

56. Angus L. Macdonald Bridge (1955) – Halifax, Nova Scotia = 338 feet

57. Manhattan Bridge (1909) – Brooklyn-New York City, New York = 336 feet

58. Senator Roth Bridge (1995) – St. Georges, Delaware = 335 feet

59. Emerson Memorial Bridge (2003) – Cape Girardeau, Missouri/Illinois = 330 feet

60-61. Puente Rio Coatzacoalcos (1984) – Veracruz, Mexico and Metro Line 2B Bridge (2018) – Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic = 325 feet

62. Ironton-Russell Bridge (2016) – Ironton, Ohio/Kentucky = 320 feet

63. Paseo/Bond Bridge (2010) – Kansas City, Missouri = 316 feet

64-66. Triborough (RFK) Bridge (1936) – New York City, New York; Mid-Hudson Bridge (1930) – Poughkeepsie, NewYork; and A. Murray MacKay Bridge (1970) – Halifax, Nova Scotia = 315 feet

67. Williamsburg Bridge (1903) – Brooklyn-New York City, New York = 310 feet

68. William Harsha Bridge (2000) – Maysville, Kentucky/Ohio = 305 feet

69-71. Varina-Enon Bridge (1990) – Richmond, Virginia; East End Crossing (2016) – Louisville, Kentucky-Indiana; and Golden Ears Bridge – Langley, British Columbia (2009) = 300 feet

72. U.S. Grant Bridge (2006) – Portsmouth, Ohio/Kentucky = 292 feet

73. Bayview Bridge (1987) – Quincy, Illinois/Missouri = 289 feet

74. 5th Street Bridge (2003) – Fitchburg, Massachusetts = 275 feet

75-78. Brooklyn Bridge (1883) – Brooklyn-New York City, New York; Veterans Memorial Bridge (1990) – Port Arthur, Texas; Puente Jesús Izcoa Moure (2008) – Naranjito, Puerto Rico; and Goethal’s Bridge – Elizabeth, New Jersey (2017) = 272 feet

79. Bunker Hill Bridge (2003) – Boston-Cambridge, Massachusetts = 270 feet

80. Puente La Amistad (2003) – Costa Rica = 262 feet

81. Abraham Lincoln Bridge (2016) – Louisville, Kentucky/Indiana = 255 feet

82. Clark Bridge (1994) – Alton, Illinois/Missouri = 250 feet

83. Pomeroy-Mason Bridge (2008) – Pomeroy-Mason, Ohio/Kentucky = 248 feet

84-85. Hendler Cable Bridge (1978) – Pasco-Kennewick, Washington and Indian River Inlet Bridge (2012) – Bethany Beach, Delaware = 240 feet

86. Roebling Suspension Bridge (1866) – Cincinnati-Covington, Ohio/Kentucky = 230 feet

87. Esplanade Riel Pedestrian Bridge (2004) Winnipeg, Manitoba = 223 feet

88. Sundial Pedestrian Bridge (2004) – Redding, California = 217 feet

89. Pont Île d’Orléans (1935) – Quebec City, Quebec = 216 feet

90. Puente Juan Bosch (2001) – Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic = 207 feet

91-92. Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge (2008) – Omaha-Council Bluffs, Nebraska/Iowa and Reiman Pedestrian Bridge (2001) – Milwaukee, Wisconsin = 200 feet

Esplanade Riel in Winnipeg – photo by the blogpost author

Likely additions – more information needed

Deh Cho Bridge (2012) – Fort Providence, Northwest Territories = ?

Dunvegan Bridge (1960) – Dunvegan, Alberta = ?

Thousand Islands Bridges (2) – USA/Canada = ?

Talmadge Memorial Bridge (1991) – Savannah, Georgia/South Carolina = ?

Puente Metro 2B (left) in Santo Domingo – Source: losminadigital.blogspot.com
Puente Atlantic in Colon, Panama – Source: skyscrapercity.com

SOURCES:

Posted in Active transportation, architecture, bicycling, bridges, Canada, Caribbean, cities, economic development, engineering, geography, highways, historic preservation, history, infrastructure, land use, Latin America, North America, Passenger rail, planning, product design, rail, recreation, rivers/watersheds, skylines, skyscrapers, spatial design, States, Statistics, technology, topography, tourism, traffic, trails, transit, transportation, Travel, urban planning, walking | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cities/suburbs should replan street networks for low-speed electric vehicles

Polaris GEM – Source: pinterest.com

As the electric vehicle revolution expands around the globe, one factor that cities and suburbs need to start accounting for is the increased adoption of low-speed electric vehicles for personal and transit use. Whether you refer to them as low-speed vehicles (LSVs), tiny cars, or neighborhood electric vehicles (NEVs), they are a category of vehicles that are designed and built not to exceed 25 miles per hour (mph). As a result, they are only street legal (in applicable states) on roads and streets with a maximum speed of 35 mph. These are not golf carts, but something that appears more like a traditional motor vehicle, but at a smaller size.

Source: gemcar.com/gem-e4/

“A Low-Speed Vehicle (LSV) is a street-legal, four-wheeled electric vehicle with a top speed of 25 mph and a gross vehicle weight rating of less than 3,000 lbs. Most states allow LSVs to drive on roads marked 35 mph or less.
Low-speed vehicles are typically electric, with a range of about 30 miles.”

Source: gemcar.com/low-speed-vehicles/

For the average consumer, spending north of $50k on an electric vehicle to primarily run errands around town seems preposterous. But, a low-speed electric vehicle priced at 1/5 to 1/3 of that is another story. The problem then lies in accessibility with such a vehicle. If whole neighborhoods and sections of a city/suburb are separated from business areas by streets/roadways that have speed limits exceeding 35 mph, then buying a low-speed electric vehicle for such purposes would be a waste of resources.

gO’side low-speed EV transit – Source: visitoceanside.org/travel-tips/goside-downtown-oceanside-shuttle/

Certain low-speed electric vehicle designs can allow micro-transit trips within the community or in a campus setting, provided the road network permits them. Such a pilot program has been taking place in the San Diego suburb of Oceanside, California, where gO’side low-speed EVs have provided a free shuttle service in the beach district and downtown area of the city.

“Low-speed vehicles must adhere to the performance and safety standards set by the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic and Safety Association) which states that low-speed vehicles must be equipped with headlamps, front and rear turn signal lights, tail lights, stop lights, reflex reflectors, mirrors, parking brake, windshield, seat-belt assembly, and an alert sound (horn).”

Source: gemcar.com/low-speed-vehicles/

This is where America’s past NIMBY attitudes towards connecting streets and neighborhoods is coming back to haunt us. If we don’t have a street network that caters to lower speed vehicles for personal or transit use, then the benefits of affordable electric vehicles are lost…as are the benefits of reducing our individual/collective carbon footprint and fighting climate change.

Squad Mobility low-speed solar EV – Source: electrek.co

As a result, areas with traditional grid street patterns currently provide the best options for low-speed electric vehicles as there are often multiple alternatives to arterials available by using paralleling lower-speed streets. Meanwhile, places, particularly suburbs, that developed in in latter half of the 20th century are going to have a harder time adapting to this new transportation option due to a plethora of cul-de-sacs; gated communities; sprawling, disconnected neighborhoods; the lack of an urban core; and a tendency to be married to freeways and arterial roadways with higher speed limits.

According to the National Household Travel Survey, 59 percent of all vehicle trips are 5 miles or less in distance.

Source: nhts.ornl.gov/vehicle-trips

Where we live in New Mexico is just such a case, as all but one of the connecting roads for accessing businesses from our neighborhood have speed limits of 45 mph or more. And that one road is well out-of-the-way for many trips. Needless to say, this blogpost will be forwarded to our community leaders in the hopes they will consider some changes to the street and road network here, particularly in regards to speed limits, but also in future street/road design.

Eli Zero – Source: automobilepropre.com

So what can be done?

Well, talking about the issue and acknowledging it is the first step. Beyond that, community leaders should work with their planning, transportation, engineering, and infrastructure departments to look at ways they can adjust speed limits and their current street network to provide greater access and interconnectability for low-speed electric vehicles. In some cases it may be as easy as revising speed limits on certain streets. Not every street or roadway has to be a four-lane arterial. Adapting some arterials by using road diets to convert them into collectors may be an option.

Other solutions may take more time and funding to resolve. The community may also want to review parking requirements during this process to see if adjustments are necessary for low-speed electric vehicles. In the longer term, community master plans and transportation plans should be revised to provide options for low-speed electric vehicles (assuming the community wishes to do so).

Unfortunately, not all local communities control their street/road networks nor their speed limits. This is especially true for townships in states like Michigan where county road commissions or the state dictate these parameters. And, in some cases, as noted above, there may be some communities who do not want to encourage low-speed vehicles on their roads. However, IF a community wishes to have a truly comprehensive transportation strategy that serves all needs and adopts to changing market conditions, then it should seriously start looking NOW at how to accommodate low-speed electric vehicles.

SOURCES:

Posted in adaptive reuse, Alternative transportation, Bus transportation, Cars, cities, civics, climate change, commerce, consumerism, density, downtown, electric vehicles, engineering, environment, EVs and hybrids, fun, geography, health, highways, history, inclusiveness, infrastructure, land use, logistics, new urbanism, parking, pictures, placemaking, planning, politics, pollution, product design, revitalization, shopping, solar, spatial design, sprawl, Statistics, technology, Trade, traffic, transit, transportation, Travel, urban design, urban planning, walking, zoning | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Celebrity bridges of the United States in pop culture

The following images and information identify 12 of the most well-known and recognizable “celebrity” bridges in the United States . These impressive structures have starred in a variety of pop culture media, including movies, documentaries, television and radio shows, books, music videos, songs, video games, logos, and the like. Too many of us, the geometric juxtaposition of steel, iron, cables, and concrete meshing with a skyline or scenic backdrop simply enthralls our spirit.

Manhattan Bridge – Source: images.fineartamerica.com

New River Gorge, Sunshine Skyway, Sixth Street Viaduct, and Bixby Creek/Canyon bridges – Sources: csengineermag.com, scientika.blogspot.com, latimes.com, and photoconcest.smithsonianmag.com

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Of the bridges shown throughout this blogpost, five (5) are from New York, three (3) from California, two (2) are in Florida, and the other two (2) are from Michigan and West Virginia. In terms of bridge design, five (5) are suspension bridges, one is a steel arch, one is a concrete arch, one is a tilted-concrete arch, one is a cable-stayed bridge, one is a cantilevered bridge, and last one is a box girder bridge. The numbers provided along with each bridge listing are meant to show how often it has been depicted in the mass media and are not necessarily meant to be exact, up-to-date numbers.

If there are any celebrity bridges in the United States that may have been overlooked, please feel free to pass them along. Peace!

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Golden Gate Bridge – San Francisco, California = 19 television shows, 42 movies, 2 documentaries, 8 video games, and numerous books, commercials, and logos

Scene from “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home – Source: memory-alpha.wikia.com
Cisco Systems logo featuring Golden Gate Bridge – Source: logo history.blogspot.com

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Sixth Street Viaduct* – Los Angeles, California = 15 television shows, 45 movies, 6 video games, 58 music videos, and numerous commercials

Starting line in “Grease” drag race beneath the Sixth Street Viaduct – Source: filmforlife.org
Below the Sixth Street Viaduct in the animated film, “The Bad Guys” – Source: latimes.com

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Brooklyn Bridge – New York City, New York = at least 2 television series, 18+ movies, 2 documentaries; 1 video game, 1 band name, 1 song, and numerous books

Frank Sinatra from movie – “It Happened in Brooklyn” – Source: youtube.com
Source: youtube.com

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Bixby Creek/Canyon Bridge – Big Sur, California = 2 television shows, 3 movies, 1 video game, 1 song title, 1 stamp, and numerous auto commercials

Bixby Bridge Stamp – Source: centralcoastfilmsocety.com

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Mackinac Bridge – Mackinaw City-St. Ignace, Michigan = 3 television shows; 1 documentary; at least 2 stamps; certain Michigan license plates; and multiple books, commercials, and logos

Source: linns.com
Source: pinterest.com

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Seven Mile Bridge* – Florida Keys, Florida = 1 television show and 3 movies

Scene from “True Lies” on the Seven Mile Bridge – Source: sceen-it.com

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George Washington Bridge – New York City, NewYork/New Jersey = 8 movies, 2 video games, 2 songs, 1 comic book, and multiple books

George Washington Bridge in scene from “Force of Evil” – Source: bfs.org.uk

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New River Gorge Bridge – Fayetteville, West Virginia = 1 movie, 2 documentaries, 1 coin, multiple books, and at least 1 commercial

New River Gorge Bridge – Source: onlyinyourstate.com

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Manhattan Bridge – New York City, New York = 2 television shows, 10 movies, 1 video game, and multiple books

Manhattan Bridge – Source: pinterest.com

Sunshine Skyway* – St. Petersburg, Florida = 2 television show, 3 movies, 1, documentary, 1 radio show, 2 songs, at least 4 books, and 1 stamp

Sunshine Skyway book – Source: jeannievanrompaey.com
Sunshine Skyway – Source: youtube.com

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Queensboro Bridge – New York City, New York = 1 televisions show, 3 books including Charlotte’s Web, and 1 song

Queensboro Bridge in the intro to “Taxi” – Source: villagepreservation.org

Verrazano Narrows Bridge – New York City, New York = at least 1 television show and 11 movies – most famously depicted in Saturday Night Fever

Scene on Verrazano Narrows Bridge from “Saturday Night Fever” – Source: groovy history.com

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*Original and replacement bridge

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If you enjoy viewing bridges as much as this retired planner does, here are a couple of calendar options available through Amazon.com.+

+A small commission is earned from purchases that are made using the above links to Amazon. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

SOURCES:

Posted in Active transportation, advertising, archaeology, architecture, art, bicycling, books, branding, bridges, business, Cars, cartoons, cities, civics, commerce, Communications, culture, economic development, engineering, entertainment, film, fitness, fun, geography, highways, hiking, historic preservation, history, infrastructure, land use, movies, music, pictures, place names, placemaking, planning, product design, psychology, recreation, scenic byways, Science fiction, skylines, songs, spatial design, Statistics, technology, Television, topography, tourism, Trade, traffic, trails, transit, transportation, Travel, urban design, urban planning, video, walking, writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cricket grounds with the largest capacity in South Asia

Narendra Mobi Stadium in Ahmedabad, India – Source: inshorts.com

Below are the largest active cricket grounds, listed by capacity, in South Asia (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Afghanistan, Bhutan, and the Maldives). A minimum seating capacity of 20,000 was required for inclusion in the list. It is actually a bit surprising to see that some of the smaller venues are located in Mumbai and Karachi given how large these cities are. Land prices and availability may affect the size of cricket grounds there. Most of the facilities are of a circular design for cricket, though there a few multipurpose stadiums included in the list and noted whenever possible. Peace!

Multan Cricket Stadium, Pakistan – Source: sportscrazy.com

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  1. Narendra Modi Stadium (1983/2020) – Ahmedabad, India = 132,000

2. Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium (1996)- Kochi, India = 80,000

3. Eden Gardens (1864) – Kolkata, India = 66,000

4. Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Cricket Stadium (2008) – Raipur, India = 65,000

5-6. Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium (2004) – Hyderabad, India and Greenfield International Stadium (2012) – Thiruvananthapuram, India = 55,000

7-8. JSCA International Stadium (2011) – Ranchi and BRSABV Ekana Cricket Stadium (2017) – Lucknow, India = 50,000

9-10. Barabati Stadium (1958) – Cuttack and New VCA Stadium (2008) – Nagpur, India = 45,000

11. Arun Jaitley Stadium (1883) – Delhi (New Delhi), India = 41,840

12-13. M. Chinnaswamy Stadium (1969) – Bengaluru, India and Assam Cricket Association Stadium (2012) – Guwahati, India = 40,000

14. Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium (2012) – Pune, India = 37,406

15. Bangabandhu National Stadium (1954) – Dacca, Bangladesh = 36,000 – a multipurpose stadium

16-19. Galle International Stadium (1876) – Galle, Sri Lanka; Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium (2009) Sooriyawewa, Sri Lanka; Pallekele International Cricket Stadium (2009) Kandy (Pallekele), Sri Lanka; R. Premadasa Stadium (1986) – Colombo, Sri Lanka = 35,000

20. National Cricket Stadium (1955) – Karachi, Pakistan = 34,228

21. Wankhede Stadium (1974) – Mumbai, India = 33,108

22. Green Park Stadium (1945) – Kanpur, India = 32,000

23-26. Holkar Stadium (1990) – Indore, India; Gautam Buddha International Cricket Stadium (under construction) – Bharatpur, Nepal; M. A. Aziz Stadium – Chittagong, Bangladesh; and Multan Cricket Stadium (2001) – Multan, Pakistan = 30,000

27. Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium (2008) – Rajkot, India = 28,000

28. Gaddafi Stadium (1959) – Lahore, Pakistan = 27,000

29. Inderjit Singh Bindra Stadium (1993) – Mohali, India = 26,000

30. Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium (2006) – Mirpur, Bangladesh = 25, 416

31-34. Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium (2016) – Dehradun, India; Dr. Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy International Cricket Stadium (2003) – Visakhapatnam, India; Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium (2003) – Dharamshala, India; and Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium (2004) – Fatullah, Bangladesh = 25,000

35. Sawai Mansingh Stadium (1969) – Jaipur, India = 23,185

36. Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium (2004) – Chittagong, Bangladesh = 22,000

37-40. Brabourne Stadium (1937) – Mumbai, India and Tribhuvan University International Cricket Ground (1998) – Katmandu, Nepal; Jinnah Stadium – Guranwala, Pakistan (a multipurpose stadium); Qayyum Stadium (a multipurpose stadium) Peshawar, Pakistan; and Ayub National Stadium (1978) – Quetta, Pakistan = 20,000

Though not large enough for this list – Dumbulla Cricket Grounds in Sri Lanka are certainly very beautiful – Source: cricketmachan.com

SOURCES:

Posted in architecture, Asia, cities, civics, culture, entertainment, fun, geography, historic preservation, history, India, infrastructure, land use, pictures, placemaking, recreation, spatial design, sports, Statistics, tourism, Travel, urban design | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cities most often destroyed in movies – both real and imagined

We’ve all seen them. Disaster flicks or superhero films that wreak havoc on a major city. It could be the result of a natural disaster, a war, a terrorist attack, nuclear attack or meltdown, an alien invasion, a plague, zombies, or destruction by some mythical monstrous creature. Sometimes, the movie only shows the aftermath of such an event, possibly with flashbacks throughout.

Godzilla attacking Tokyo in 1954 – Source: japantimes.co.jp

Sadly, we have also seen the heartbreaking and traumatic results of real life warfare shown though the camera lens. It seemed only fair to those who were impacted by the horrors of war to include films on this list that depict previously destroyed cities in a movie. This is particularly the case following World War II, but may also include other conflicts. Berlin, Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Leningrad, and Stalingrad are clear examples. Hopefully, the often desperate and grisly scenes from such films helps give pause to most leaders who might consider initiating warfare.

Starkly grim image from film “Year Zero” set in postwar Berlin – Source: bfi.org.uk

The list below identifies those cities that have most often been shown as destroyed by fictional or true events in film. In some cases, such as the movie Independence Day, multiple cities fall victim to the alien attack. While researching this post, some numerical differences were found in the count from various resources. In those situations, this blogpost decided to use the highest number found for each city, as some sources are more recent than others.

Not included are those films where the whole planet has been destroyed, as took place in Don’t Look Up, nor when just specific buildings or landmarks are demolished – e.g. The Eiffel Tower in the final scene of The Great Race.

As always, any additions, corrections, or suggestions are most welcome. In particular, more instances from foreign films would be useful to include. Peace!

Los Angeles in the aftermath of the movie “Earthquake” from 1974 – Source: mikesmoviecave.blogspot.com

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  1. New York City, NY, USA = 69

2. Los Angeles, CA, USA = 36

3. Tokyo, Japan = 25 – given the number of Godzilla films, you’d think this number would be higher

4. San Francisco, CA, USA = 17

5. Paris, France = 14

6. London, UK = 13

7-8. Berlin, Germany and Hiroshima, Japan = 12 each

9. Washington, DC, USA = 10

10. Chicago, IL , USA = 6

11-13. St. Petersburg (Leningrad), Russia; Volgograd (Stalingrad), Russia; and Pompeii, Italy = 5 each

14. Las Vegas, NV, USA = 4

15-16. Rome, Italy and Nagasaki, Japan = 3 each

SOURCES:

Posted in art, atomic age, cartoons, cities, entertainment, film, history, military, movies, nature, Outer Space, pictures, politics, pollution, Science fiction, theaters, video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Skyscrapers of 100 stories or more above ground

Below are listed all the skyscrapers around the planet that rise 100 stories or more above the ground. Ones shown in italics are either under construction or construction has halted. If an expected year of completion is known, it is provided. Proposed towers and/or former skyscrapers are not included as part the list though the twin towers of the World Trade Center do appear in the graphic, which up to date through 2016.

Source: oldskyscraper.org

Cities with the most 100 story towers are:

  • Dubai, UAE and Chicago, USA = 3 each
  • Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Wuhan, China = 2 each

Merdeka 118 rising above Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (completed in 2022) – Source: newatlas.com

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Jeddah (Kingdom) Tower (Jeddah, Saudi Arabia) = 168 floors – work halted in 2018

Burj Khalifa (Dubai, UAE) = 163 floors

Shanghai Tower (Shanghai, China) = 128 floors

Goldin Finance 117 (Tianjin, China) = 128 floors – topped out but work uncompleted

Lotte World Tower (Seoul, South Korea) = 123 floors

Abraj Al-Bait Clock Tower (Mecca, Saudi Arabia) = 120 floors

Merdeka 118 (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) = 118 floors

Ping An International Finance Centre (Shenzhen, China) = 115 floors

Guangzhou CTF Finance Centre (Guangzhou, China) = 111 floors

Chushang Building (Wuhan, China) = 111 floors (2025)

China Zun (Beijing, China) = 109 floors

International Commerce Centre (Hong Kong, China) = 108 floors

Willis Tower (Chicago, IL, USA) = 108 floors

Greenland Centre (Xian, China) = 108 floor (2025)

Tianshan Gate of the World (Shijiazhuang, China) = 106 floor (2027)

Suzhou Zhongnan Center (Suzhou, China) = 103 floors (2025)

Empire State Building (New York City, NY, USA) = 102 floors

Greenland Jinmao International Financial Center (Nanjing, China) = 102 floors (2025)

Taipei 101 (Taipei, Taiwan) = 101 floors

Shanghai World Financial Center (Shanghai, China) = 101 floors

Wuhan Greenland Center (Wuhan, China) = 101 floors

Guangzhou International Finance Center (Guangzhou, China) = 101 floors

Marina 101 (Dubai, UAE) = 101 floors

Princess Tower (Dubai, UAE) = 101 floors

Haeundae LCT The Sharp Landmark Tower (Busan, South Korea) = 101 floors

The St. Regis (Chicago, IL, USA) = 101 floors

Chengdu Greenland Tower (Chengdu, China) = 101 floors (2024)

Fuyuan Zhongshan 108 IFC (Zhongshan, China) = 101 floors (2029)

John Hancock Tower (Chicago, IL, USA ) = 100 floors

Dongfeng Plaza Landmark Tower (Kunming, China) = 100 floors (2024)

SOURCES:

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Three superb and fresh reads about Los Angeles

Downtown with the newly re-minted 6th Street Viaduct – Source: lattimes.com (Allen J. Schauben)

The following three recently published books, strive to enlighten anyone wishing to learn more about Los Angeles as they attempt to explain this mighty 21st Century city in uniquely different ways.

The first, The Mirage Factory: Illusion, Imagination, and the Invention of Los Angeles, was published in 2019. It sets about describing three larger-than-life personalities who helped lay the building blocks that turned sleepy Los Angeles into today’s modern megacity.

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Link – The Mirage Factory………..Link – Everything Now………..Link – Freewaytopia

*A small commission is earned from purchases that are made using the above links to Amazon. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

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Secondly, Everything Now: Lessons From the City-State of Los Angeles, explorers the city and its hinterlands on an interpersonal street level from the wealthy elites residing in Malibu to the destitute seeking out a meager living on Skid Row. It was published in 2021.

Lastly, Freewaytopia: How Freeways Shaped Los Angeles, was published in 2021 and describes how the city’s quintessential freeway network helped shape Los Angeles into our perception of endless concrete ribbons, often associated with it even today.

All three are excellent and captivating books that anyone would enjoy reading. Whether the authors are successful in adding clarity to the often unexplainable is largely up to the reader. As is often referenced throughout much of Everything Now, Los Angeles largely defies explanation. It can be a city, a climate, a mega-region, a city of dreams, a city of desire, a city of inequality, a city of fame and fortune, and a city of the lost and lonely…despite having 15 million neighbors.

“For my part, it [Los Angeles] is the only place in the United States where I can stand anywhere and feel like I am in the middle of everything, and also like I am nowhere at all.”

Rosecrans Baldwin – “Everything Now”

One thing is for sure. These three books will certainly introduce readers to the width and breadth of mighty Los Angeles. If that entity, however you define it, resists a simple explanation, then so be it. For that may be one of the LA’s most endearing and enduring qualities. An undefinable city. Hmmm…?

Enjoy!

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Finding “Los Angeles” amid the aura of “LA”

Downtown Los Angeles with the San Gabriel Mountains in the background – Source: unsplash.com

Every city is unique unto itself. Just like human beings, cities have their own character, appearance, identity, flaws, attributes, and aesthetics. As a result, no single individual book is likely to encapsulate the essence of an entire city…especially an enormous one like Los Angeles, California. Heck, Los Angeles has so many nicknames, it would probably take a full book just to summarize them – LA, Hollywood, Tinseltown, City of Angels, Shaky Town, and La La Land are but a few.

This is why I have been so pleased to find three (3) recently published books on Los Angeles that go a long way towards explaining our fascination (or in some cases our disdain) with this vast Southern California megacity. These books are The Mirage Factory (2019), Everything Now (2021), and Freewaytopia (2021).*

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Link – The Mirage Factory………..Link – Everything Now………..Link – Freewaytopia

*A small commission is earned from purchases that are made using the above links to Amazon. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

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Unless you live in Southern California, the nickname LA likely conjures up certain perceptions that we have developed over time through the media. For, no matter how much an outsider may want to block LA from their mind, it will inevitably finds its way back into their thoughts – via the news, film, television shows, writing, art, conversation, music, sports, you name it. Most megacities probably have this same effect on people, but LA is truly different. It’s different because it is literally and figuratively the epicenter of the entertainment world…no matter how much New York City, London, or Tokyo may wish to claim otherwise. As a result, whether you care about LA or not, multitudes of shows, books, songs, art, and movies are going to incorporate some aspect of its psyche and physicality within them. It may be in terminology or a writing style. It may be a geographic feature or place. Or, it may be a name, a cultural phenomenon, or a fashion statement.

The question ultimately becomes, does the aura of “LA” that we develop from these sources accurately represent the true essence of “Los Angeles” as a city, as a community, or even as its abbreviated megacity moniker, of LA? Multiple visits to Los Angeles by this retired urban planner that go beyond the traditional tourist sites and these three (3) remarkable books respond with a resounding no. There is so much more to “Los Angeles”…the entity… than is (or can be) portrayed by “LA” …the image… we are presented through media resources.

A view looking down Hollywood Boulevard

All three books will enlighten anyone wishing to learn more about Los Angeles as they attempt to explain the city in uniquely different ways. One (The Mirage Factory: Illusion, Imagination, and the Invention of Los Angeles) sets about describing three larger-than-life personalities who helped lay the building blocks that turned sleepy Los Angeles into today’s modern megacity.

Another (Everything Now: Lessons From the City-State of Los Angeles) explorers the city and its environs on an interpersonal street level from the wealthy elites residing in Malibu to the destitute seeking out a meager living on Skid Row. The book also addresses the distinction made by some Southern Californians of being a resident of “LA” as ascribed to as a universe of many individual communities versus of being a resident of “Los Angeles” as a shared and common entity.

Lastly (Freewaytopia: How Freeways Shaped Los Angeles) describes how the city’s quintessential freeway network helped shape Los Angeles into the perception of endless concrete ribbons we often associate with it, despite the fact that both the city and mega-region have developed an impressive network of commuter railways, subways, and bike trails.

Downtown LA as seen from Hollywood Heights

Through the power of the media’s framework, many of us feel that we know Los Angeles personally from sources like the television series and films…or from songs like Randy Newman’s celebratory anthem, “I Love LA.” We feel we know Los Angeles from the likes of Dragnet, Adam-12, The Brady Bunch, Earthquake, Chinatown, LA Law, CHiPS, Valley Girl, Baywatch, LA Confidential, Independence Day, Hail Caesar, Straight Outta Compton, La La Land, La Brea, and so-so many other television shows and movies beyond the ones listed here.

Source: tvinsider.com

Or, perhaps our views on Los Angeles are based stories in the news media. Topics like housing prices, homelessness, gangs, pollution, race, or congestion likely shape opinions of the city whether we realize it or not. Is Los Angeles perfect? Of course not, but show me any city that is without problems to solve.

Sources: amazon.ca, leopard13.com, and en.wikipedia.org

Los Angeles is no longer “a great big freeway” as was ruefully sung by Dionne Warwick in 1968. In fact, it’s not even one of the five most congested cities in the United States (it’s #6). Los Angeles is a vibrant city with many charming residential neighborhoods, bustling commercial districts, active transportation systems, scenic vistas, hiking trails, museums, performance venues, beaches, mountains, and a wonderful diversity of people from across the country and around the globe.

Just like Randy Newman, I love Los Angeles, LA, or whatever name you wish to apply to this mighty megacity. Despite all of its foibles, the City of Los Angeles, radiates energy, excitement, and charisma. I find myself drawn to there over and over and over again. The fact that “Los Angeles” is the very heart and soul of a larger dynamic region nicknamed “LA,” only sweetens this love affair.

I hope you enjoy reading these three (3) books as much as I did.

Peace!

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Humorous nicknames for complicated freeway interchanges

“The Beast,” “The Octopus,” or “East Delay” just east of downtown LA – Source: maps.google.com

Below are the humorous names given to complicated freeway interchanges. The most common terms tend to be “Spaghetti Junction” (20), “Spaghetti Bowl” (6), “Malfunction Junction” (8), or “Mixing Bowl/Mixmaster” (8). Frankly, I’m surprised no one has nicknamed a complicated interchange “Dysfunction Junction,” the “Merge and Purge,” “Fender Blender,” the “Concrete Bungle,” “Motormaze,” or “The Clash.”

Other interchanges have nicknames, such as “The Stack,” but those were felt to be more descriptive than humorous. If you know of other humorous nicknames that were missed, please feel free to pass them on for inclusion on this list. Peace!

AUSTRALIA

New South Wales

Light Horse Interchange (M4 & M7) in Sydney – “Spaghetti Junction”

Queensland

M3 & M7 in Brisbane – “Spaghetti Junction”

Victoria

Springvale Junction in Melbourne – “Spaghetti Junction”

BOTSWANA

Thapama Junction (A1 & A3) in Francistown – “Spaghetti Junction”

CANADA

Alberta

Deerfoot Trail & Bowbottom Trail in Calgary – “Spaghetti Junction”

“Messy Spaghetti Junction” in Toronto – Source: maps.google.com

Ontario

HWY 427, QEW, and the Gardiner Expressway in Toronto – “Messy Spaghetti Junction”

GERMANY

A3 & A440 – “Spaghetti Junction”

INDONESIA

Waru-Juanda Toll Road, Surabaya–Gempol Toll Road, and the Surabaya–Mojokerto Toll Road in Surabaya – “Spaghetti Junction”

MALAYSIA

DASH Expressway, LDP Expressway, and the Spring Expressway – “Spaghetti Junction”

NEW ZEALAND

Central Motorway at NZ-1 and NZ-16 in Auckland – “Spaghetti Junction”

SOUTH AFRICA

N2 & N3 in Durban – “Spaghetti Junction”

UNITED KINGDOM

England

Original “Spaghetti Junction” outside of Birmingham, UK – Source: maps.google.com

M6 & A38(M) in Birmingham – “Spaghetti Junction” – original use of the nickname

M60 at M61, A580, and A666(M) between Manchester and Bolton – “Spaghetti Junction”

UNITED STATES

Alabama

I-565 & Memorial Parkway in Huntsville – “Malfunction Junction”

California

I-5 & I-405 in Los Angeles (Irvine) – “El Toro Y”

I-5 @ I-10, CA-60, and US 101 in downtown Los Angeles – “The Beast,” “East Delay,” “Nickel/Dime,” “The Octopus,” and “Malfunction Junction”

I-5 @ CA-22 and CA-57 in Los Angeles (Orange) – “The Orange Crush”

US 101 & CA-110 in Los Angeles – “The Four Letter Interchange”added 1/9/23

I-10 @ CA-57 and CA-71 in Los Angeles (Pomona) – “Kellogg Krunch” – added 1/21/23

I-80 @ I-580 and I-880 in Oakland (Emeryville) – “MacArthur Maze”

I-280 & US 101 in San Francisco – “Alemany Maze”

US 101 @ Potrero Avenue and Bayshore Boulevard in San Francisco – “The Hairball”

Colorado

Turnpike Tangle” just north of Denver – Source: maps.google.com

I-25 & I-70 in Denver – “The Mousetrap”

I-25 & I-225 in Denver (Centennial) – “The Full House” – 222/55 from 25 and 225

I-25 @ I-76, I-270, and US 36 in Denver (Commerce City) – “Turnpike Tangle”

Connecticut

I-95 @ I-91 and CT-34 in New Haven – “New Haven Mixmaster”

I-84 & CT-8 in Waterbury – “Waterbury Mixmaster”

Florida

I-95 & I-595 in Fort Lauderdale – “The Rainbow” or “Lauderloop”

I-95 @ Florida Turnpike, SR 826 and US 441 in Miami (Miami Gardens) – “Spaghetti Junction”

I-4 & I-275 in downtown Tampa – “Malfunction Junction”

Georgia

“The Top Knot” in Atlanta (Sandy Springs) – Source: maps.google.com

I-85 & I-285 in Atlanta (DeKalb County) – “Spaghetti Junction” or “Malfunction Junction”

I-285 @ GA-400/US 19 in Atlanta (Sandy Springs) – “The Top Knot”

Illinois

I-90/94 & I-290 in downtown Chicago – “The Spaghetti Bowl”

I-88 @ I-290 and I-294 in Chicago (Hillside) – “The Hillside Strangler”

I-80 @ I-74 and I-280 in Moline – “The Big X”

Indiana

I-65 & I-70 North Split in downtown Indianapolis – “Spaghetti Junction”

Iowa

I-35 @ I-80 and I-235 in Des Moines (Altoona) – “East Mixmaster”

I-80 @ I-35 and I-235 in Des Moines (West Des Moines) – “West Mixmaster”

Kentucky

I-65 @ I-64 and I-71 in downtown Louisville – “Spaghetti Junction”

Louisiana

I-10 & US 90 in New Orleans – “Megachange”

Massachusetts

I-90 & I-93 in downtown Boston – “Spaghetti Junction”

Michigan

I-696 @ US 10 and US 24 in Detroit (Southfield) – “Mixing Bowl”

Minnesota

I-35 @ I-535 and US 53 in Duluth – “Can of Worms”

I-35W @ I-94, US 52, and US 12 in downtown Minneapolis – “Spaghetti Junction”

Nevada

I-11/I-515 @ US 93/95 and I-215 in Las Vegas (Henderson) – “Hender-Bender” or “Henderson Spaghetti Bowl”

I-15 & I-515/US 93/95 in downtown Las Vegas – “Vegas Spaghetti Bowl”

I-80 & I-590 in Reno – “Reno Spaghetti Bowl”

New Jersey

I-80 @ US 46 and NJ-23 outside of New York City – “Spaghetti Junction”

New Mexico

“The Big I” just northeast of downtown Albuquerque – Source: maps.google.com

I-25 & I-40 northeast of downtown Albuquerque – “The Big I”

New York

I-490 @ I-590 and NY-96 in Rochester – “Can of Worms”

North Carolina

I-26 & I-40 in Asheville – “Malfunction Junction”

Pennsylvania

I-81 @ US 22 – “Spaghetti Junction”

South Carolina

I-20 & I-26 at I-126 in Columbia – “Malfunction Junction”

Tennessee

I-275 & I-40 in Knoxville – “Malfunction Junction”

I-40 & I-255 in Memphis – “Malfunction Junction”

I-65 & I-440 in Nashville – “Spaghetti Junction”

Texas

“The High Five” in Dallas – Source: txdot.gov

I-635 & US 75 in Dallas – “The High Five”

I-10 & I-110/US 54 in downtown El Paso – “Spaghetti Bowl”

I-35W & I-30 in Fort Worth – “The Pretzel” or “The Mixmaster”

I-45 & Allen Parkway in downtown Houston – “Spaghetti Bowl”

Utah

I-15 & I-80/UT-201 in Salt Lake City (South Salt Lake) – “Spaghetti Bowl”

Virginia

I-395 & VA-27 at the Pentagon in Washington, DC (Arlington, VA) – “Mixing Bowl”

I-95 @ I-395 and I-495 in Washington, DC (Springfield, VA) – “Mixing Bowl”

SOURCES:

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