Is it realistic to have a city without roads (cars) ?

Posted by An egg trying to draw a map on 13 July 2017 in English (English)

So my plans for York (Fergus until the map updates) is to have it originally as a city state that was founded around 1300 to 1500 and there was economic boom around the Renaissance era that saw the city expand rapidly with a population of about 200,000 people. However when cars became available and streets were being converted to suit cars and new roads built for cars York which expanded to occupy (most?) of Kanea (Araluen for the time being) they entered a civil war and a depression. So the economy was in a depression until the 1970s. That's when the city decided to keep the old roads except for major streets where cars could drive on, the outside of the old city developed to have buildings and modern houses with roads and the road ring along with the other motorways were funded by foreign nations in the 1960s but were completed in the 1980s.

This project is to hopefully have something unique by having little roads in the city and the rest are simply only for people walking or biking but keep the realism at the same time with the help of the city's history. Also, my country is... let's not say it but I want my country to be a well-mapped country that isn't one of the worst mapped countries AHEM AHEM RIGHT NOW COUGH Feedback and HARSH CRITICISM is greatly appreciated.

  • Egg
Location: 40.601, 131.591

Comment from zhenkang on 13 July 2017 at 22:47

Possible. The city cab be connected by bikes instead.

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Comment from Alessa on 14 July 2017 at 04:59

A largely car-free city is an interesting idea. You might be inspired by some of the places found on this Wikipedia list. Very few of the green or brown locations are very large, but Ghent, York, Dubrovnik, Tripoli (Lebanon) or others might be an inspiration to you. I'd look at how they operate and why they can be successful. Water access or availability of water transport seems to be a big factor. Maybe that would help with your city.

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Comment from Marcello on 14 July 2017 at 08:25

A full city without cars seems unthinkable to me, but your scenario where you create a (pretty large, by the way) older city center that is at least only partly accessible for cars is totally feasible. The Wiki list has mainly small neighbourhoods at most which are car -free. I checked all that I know and reckon most are indeed either old and well -preserved city centers where road widening would be a disgrace, or specially designed modern area's. No place on the list is actually so large that it would be impossible to cross by foot in more than, say, 15 minutes.

A Renaissance city center of 200.000 is pretty ambitious, but I would love to see the result, as it should look beautiful (in the end).

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Comment from Demuth on 14 July 2017 at 10:48

Although not European, this immediately made me think of the old medina in Fez, Morocco, which is a spectacular maze of streets free of cars, with over 150,000 people living in it still. It's one of the most stunning cities I've seen, the medina feels like a place that hasn't changed in 1,000 years - the streets are simply too narrow for cars, in places it feels like it's no wider than two people with their arms outstretched. It's a truly beautiful place.

Here it is on OSM.

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Comment from An egg trying to draw a map on 14 July 2017 at 14:09

Thanks for the feedback, I'll turn down some numbers when it comes to population and make the city center smaller where it takes no more than 1 hour to go in a full circle when walking, subways would probably be a busy method of traveling from one end of the city to the other end and a few major roads that allow cars going through the city center.

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Comment from martinum4 on 15 July 2017 at 20:03

If you have really narrow streets that where supposed to be used by horse carriages you could turn them into oneway-Streets for regular cars. I personally would go for something Amsterdam-ish where one is punished for using cars, it's really difficult and expensive there (parking per day between 20 and 55€ in the City center), bicycles however have no problem getting around...

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Comment from Ūdilugbulgidħū on 18 July 2017 at 22:40

Without cars, yes. Without roads, tracks, paths, canals etc no. The rest of your history of York ... needs some work. For a believable car-free city you need to start with a believable history that might have led to that. Current absence of cars could be deep rooted in practical necessity - like Venice or Fez - or it could be an imposition by some authority in more recent times. How you make that is up to you. Whatever, you need to make a convincing argument a to why the city would be car free. However, my first caution wouldn't be about transport, it would be about giving a large 'renaissance' city far away from Ingerland an English (Ingerish) name. If you're developing a believable long-established culture in OGF it has to either fit in with other (previously developed) cultures in OGF - or stand alone. Make up some names, or get names from an unusual language. For parts of the city if not the whole place. Then later (i.e. today) the country could speak Ingerish as a result of foreign influence. You'd have a mix of old native names and modern English ones (like many places in the real world). Good luck.

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