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The North American City

Geography of the United States & Canada

 

Tags: urban, prezi, planning, urbanism, architecture, North America.


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9 Reasons the U.S. Ended Up So Much More Car-Dependent Than Europe

9 Reasons the U.S. Ended Up So Much More Car-Dependent Than Europe | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
Understanding mistakes of the past can help guide U.S. transportation policy in the future.

 

In 2010, Americans drove for 85 percent of their daily trips, compared to car trip shares of 50 to 65 percent in Europe. Longer trip distances only partially explain the difference. Roughly 30 percent of daily trips are shorter than a mile on either side of the Atlantic. But of those under one-mile trips, Americans drove almost 70 percent of the time, while Europeans made 70 percent of their short trips by bicycle, foot, or public transportation.  The statistics don't reveal the sources of this disparity, but there are nine main reasons American metro areas have ended up so much more car-dependent than cities in Western Europe.


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Kendra King's curator insight, January 28, 2015 7:51 PM

According to this article, “U.S. (transportation) planners” look to Europe for inspiration as the planners try to decrease Americans’ “car dependency.” Instead of giving answers about how to solve the “car dependency” issue, the author provided nine reasons for why Europeans walk and bike more. Ideas like how the European infrastructure was built (i.e their zoning laws, highways, and biking/pedestrian lanes) were discussed. I found the implication that European’s were able to walk more because residential areas and businesses were intermixed the most interesting of all these reasons. It could never really matter because most of America’s land is already developed, but it did make me remember an earlier study mentioned in the article in which 70% of Americans wouldn’t walk a mile when they could. Triggering this just made me think that intermixing our buildings wouldn’t matter because we are too lazy to walk. Some may come back with the idea that a lack of relaxed pedestrian and bike lanes prohibit this option. However, with the amount of sidewalks around, I just keep thinking it all goes back to how much we exercise (which isn’t much). So honestly, it is an unhealthy attitude that planners need to change. Meaning some drastic action would need to occur in order to actually change people’s habits.

 

 More drastic ideas like decreasing government subsidies on oil, taxing cars, and implementing policies that “shifted behavior” (i.e. no parking zones) were also explained. However with oil companies and car industries around, I don’t actually see lobbyist letting that happening in the short term. Ironically, the article mentioned that the reason U.S. planners were thinking about how to change transportation was because the model the county uses is “unstainable.” This means the transportation system cannot be maintained for either “environmental, social, or economic reasons” (see included link for definition). Thinking about these factors, I just kept coming back to oil. Environmentally it is a fixed resource, socially people want less of it due to climate change, and economically it is typically more costly. What this all means is that an alternative energy source is needed. When that eventually happens, America will probably believe the transportation system is sustainable again regardless of “urban sprawl” and lack of “public transportation.” I say this because the author pointed out how America thought itself stable during the 80’s and 90’s when energy prices were low thereby implying the bigger issue is the oil needed to change people’s behavior. 

 

Overall, the author did provide an in-depth list that made me pay attention to the cultural and government differences between America and Europe from the way space interacts with these regions.

 

*http://environment.transportation.org/environmental_issues/sustainability/#bookmarksubSustainableTransportation

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, February 4, 2015 6:41 PM

 A big reason why people are more car dependant in America is because we are a lazy nation.  Americans are always looking for the easy way to accomplish things, so if you can drive a mile to work in 2 minutes or walk in 15, its almost guarenteed that the American is walking! This is obviously a general term and does not apply to all Americans but a vast majority would opt for the vehicle.  As someone who has taken several trips to Europe, people there are in far better shape than in America and i'm sure that fitness along with better eating habits attribute to that.  

Another reason I believe America is more dependant than Europe on cars is because it is far easier and cheaper to travel via train or subway in Europe.  Train stations and public transport in America are expensive and only take you to highly populated areas while the trains in Europe will take you all over the continent.

 

Gene Gagne's curator insight, November 18, 2015 2:40 PM

This has major impact on health issues, because nobody wants to walk or bike anymore which most of us did until 16 years old, it is a good form of exercise and can keep a persons body weight down. Which would lead to less health issues. Also the pollution from the vehicles and illegal dumping of tires and batteries and oil which leads to environmental problems. Socially we would meet more people and even see more of our surroundings if we drove less. Economically we as individuals would save money by not driving or would we? We would save on gas, licenses, maintenance, but on the other hand our renewal of licenses, registration, and even taxes on the vehicle help support our schools, busing and other community projects. This funding would be cut and therefore taxes will rise on something else we would end up paying for. I personally just think as Americans we drive everywhere and spend less time taking bikes, walks even skateboards all over the city which we loved to do as teenagers. I don't expect to be rollerblading or skateboarding at an older age but why do we stop at 16. It is because we are allowed to under the law to drive and everyone can't wait until high school to get their license. Once we give up our bikes and rollerblades, skateboards, walks it is hard to go back to it.

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A Wave of Sewing Jobs as Orders Pile Up at U.S. Factories

A Wave of Sewing Jobs as Orders Pile Up at U.S. Factories | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
Factories are finding that years of doing business overseas has withered what once was a thriving textile and apparel work force in the United States.

 


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Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, January 29, 2014 9:33 AM

This article highlights the biggest problem in the American job market today, the skill gap.  People have been told for years that the only way to a good job is to go to college.  This is not always true and this article highlights this.  There are skilled trades out there but no one skilled to do them.  This problem needs to be addressed so that the unemployed work force can be trained to do these types of jobs.  Young people today seem to feel that the only way is a college degree but this article highlights the other paths to work which are through skilled trade labor.  People complain that nothing is made here but there are reasons for that and when companies try to bring industry back to America they encounter the skill gap. 

Paige Therien's curator insight, February 3, 2014 4:06 PM

Manufacturing companies have to weigh the pros and cons of outsourcing or staying domestic.  Many companies have chosen profits over quality and safety by outsourcing jobs over the past couple decades.  Outsourcing of jobs is a product of globalization.  However, the internet and other informational resources are also a large part of globalization which have allowed citizens of the United States to be exposed to what is actually happening in these outsourced manufacturing factories (similar to the role photography played in exposing behind-the-scenes truths of the United State's domestic manufacturing during the Industrial Revolution).  The demand for domestic-made products is increasing, and companies are listening.  However, the years that these jobs have been overseas have allowed not only the specialized skills of domestic workers to disappear, but also the creation of stigmas towards these jobs.

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, September 10, 2014 3:16 PM

This article is quite interesting.  Everyone seems to complain that more product needs to be made in the USA instead of elsewhere in poorer countries.  This company in Minnesota is doing just that.  After receiving complaints about not enough product being made here they decided to leave countries where safety is not such an issue and bring it home.  Now the problem lies with finding skilled workers here.  Being a 'sewer' isn't very glamourous and not appealing to the youth of America.  This being said, it is going to be very difficult to bring jobs back to America when no one here is interested in putting the energy forth to gain the skills needed to hold these positions. 

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Linguistic Diversity at Home

Linguistic Diversity at Home | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"Counties where at least 10 percent of people speak a language other than English at home."


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Ryan Amado's curator insight, December 10, 2013 11:02 PM

This map does not bring many surprises.  Places where there are a lot of Spanish speaking families are present in places where many Spanish people immigrate to, along the Mexican border and the southern tip of Florida, where Cuba is close by.  One interesting thing about the French areas seen in Louisiana is that their version of French is a regional dialect. Not only is their a cluster of French speaking families, but they are all speaking a language native to the region.  It is very surprising that there are not as many French speaking families along the Canadien border.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, September 26, 2014 11:34 AM

This map shows how linguistically diverse the United States is today. This map reminded me of one of the slides that we went over in class about how in the Northwest Region the predominant language was German and now it is mainly English, with some German and Native American languages still spoken in certain parts.

Giselle Figueroa's curator insight, September 26, 2014 10:29 PM

This data is very interesting because you can see that most of these statements speak Spanish. I noticed that most people who speak another language at home (in this case Spanish)  besides English are located in the south western of United States. I wonder if this has something to do with people who immigrated to U.S  from south America.

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Not All English is the Same

Not All English is the Same | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"22 Maps That Show How Americans Speak English Totally Differently From Each Other"


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Lena Minassian's curator insight, January 27, 2015 5:58 PM

This article was actually funny and interesting. You do not really pay attention to the pronunciation of words just because we are surrounded by the same people who say a particular word the same way. Many individuals in the US are in for a culture shock if they leave their respected homes. One word that you have grown up with may be a completely different word in another area. We tend to not focus a lot of attention on the smaller details like this type of grammar and pronunciation so this caught my eye because it was interesting to think about and realize how you say words compared to the rest of the United States.

Louis Mazza's curator insight, January 28, 2015 11:53 AM

to me this is not so shocking but definitely entertaining. i mean between my family their is pronunciation differences. some say tomato others say toma`to right? not all English is the same is a concept that makes perfect sense to me. in other countries such as Italy, a person from the north cannot understand a person from the south because they speak in different dialects. perhaps it has to their with their location, or job types. but it holds true that different parts of a country can speak the same language in different ways. 

Kevin Cournoyer's curator insight, April 8, 2015 3:04 PM

I've seen this collection of maps a number of times before, but they are just as interesting and informative every time I look at them. It's really a fun exercise in seeing what phrases you use or how you pronounce certain words as opposed to the rest of the country. As a Rhode Islander, the bubbler/water fountain divide was of particular interest to me. I also found it funny that I have the vaguely Western/Midwestern tendency of calling "rotaries" (or what are traditionally called rotaries in my area), "roundabouts". This is especially curious to me, because I generally tend to think of that term as a British one. Could this possibly mean that a lot of British immigrants settled in the Western/Midwestern United States? Or am I just mistaken and buying into a poorly informed stereotype about British people?

 

Whatever the case, these maps are very informative and say a lot about the linguistic differences that occur even within one country. Now granted, the United States is a large country, so there is bound to be a good amount of variation. But it's still fascinating to me just how much variety there can be. The fact that when traveling, your use or pronunciation of a certain word or phrase can immediately identify you as an out-of-towner is very interesting. This is yet another example of the importance of doing your own research in order to avoid making incorrect assumptions. Just because all of the people within a geographic border may live in the same country, it does not mean that their dialects or colloquialisms are all the same. It does not even necessarily mean that they speak the same language. Different immigrant groups (because almost no country is impervious to immigration) settle in different areas and this ends up contributing (in part) to the different dialects and expressions that one finds within geographic borders. 

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Canada: As immigration booms, ethnic enclaves swell and segregate

Canada: As immigration booms, ethnic enclaves swell and segregate | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
More than 600 newcomers per day have arrived in Canada since 2006, and many of them have settled in neighbourhoods like Richmond, B.C.

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Nathan Chasse's curator insight, January 24, 2014 1:15 PM

This article contains details about the Canadian immigrant population boom, mostly from east Asia, which began in the 90's. Unsurprisingly, many of these immigrants settle into communities with others whom share their culture. These Canadian ethnic enclaves differ from those in the US because most immigrants are choosing suburban areas (where the cost of living is lower) rather than being relegated to an urban "ethnictown." However, these enclaves are not entirely a product of economic equality as the average earnings for a recent immigrant are only 61% of a Canadian-born worker, limiting their ability to move elsewhere.

 

Conversely, the immigrant communities which become economically successful are seeing many of their sons and daughters move away to the city or other suburbs as they are more fully integrated into the Canadian culture and if there is no influx of new immigrants into these enclaves they begin to die out. This seems to indicate that long-standing ethnic enclaves are at least partially the product of economic inequality than a desire to preserve culture.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, January 29, 2014 9:41 AM

This article was interesting because it showed how modern immigration patterns are not that dissimilar from historic patterns.  People come to a new country and they settle in an area that has relatives or familiar people already living there.  The formation of ethnic enclaves is the example.  People are choosing to self-segregate when they immigrate to a new homeland because it is the familiar with in the strange.  Perhaps once the new immigrants have acclimated to Canadian society they may move out of the enclave areas but they also may stay.  It is an interesting example of how people cluster together with similar people when they move to a new country.

Gubert's curator insight, February 11, 2015 5:17 AM

XIPHIAS Immigration is one among the Top Five Immigration Consultants in India according to The siliconindia as Top Five Most Promising Immigration Consultants. www.xiphiasimmigration,com

 

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Half of Canada’s population

Half of Canada’s population | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"Half of Canada’s 33.5 million people live in the red part, the other in the yellow. More population divided maps (Source: reddit.com)"


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, November 2, 2015 3:58 PM

Land-wise, Canada one of the world's biggest countries, but population-wise, most of it is quite barren.  What geographic factors explain the population concentration and distribution in Canada?  


TagsCanada, map, North America.

JeanneSilvey's curator insight, November 17, 2015 10:09 AM

A great illustration of population concentration and high density in Urban centers. 4.6 million of the remaining 17 million (approx.) live in British Columbia.

 

Gene Gagne's curator insight, November 17, 2015 11:41 AM

First economically for trade routes you have the St. Lawrence river which was originally the most influential route for French explorers. You have Toronto the Canada's financial center which forms the core of the "Golden Horseshoe" region, which wraps around the western end of Lake Ontario, population wise a quarter of Canada's population lives here.  Politically it makes sense that government would be set up in that area because of the population in that area.  Which population leads to the social aspect because all activities of night life, restaurants, businesses, entertainment, malls, etc. are located in this area.  And lastly, it makes easy access for United States and Canada to exchange tourism and jobs and goods.

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Historical Metropolitan Populations of the United States

Historical Metropolitan Populations of the United States | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"The graph and tables on this page attempt to show how the urban hierarchy of the United States has developed over time. The statistic used here is the population of the metropolitan area (contiguous urbanized area surrounding a central city), not the population of an individual city. Metropolitan area population is much more useful than city population as an indicator of the size and importance of a city, since the official boundaries of a city are usually arbitrary and often do not include vast suburban areas. For example, in 2000 San Antonio was the 10th largest city in the U.S., larger than Boston or San Francisco, but its Metro Area was only ranked about 30th. The same thing was happening even back in 1790: New York was the biggest single city, but Philadelphia plus its suburbs of Northern Liberties and Southwark made it the biggest metro area."


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Paige Therien's curator insight, February 3, 2014 11:29 AM

This information is a helpful illustrator for someone who knows about the geography and history of the United States.  It is important to note the use of "metropolitan populations" rather than "city populations" within particular city borders; as the creator states, "boundaries of a city are usually arbitrary".  In other words, the information that can be given from a "city" do not tell the whole story.  Metropolitan areas, even if spanning out of city borders, share similar local culture dynamics, industry, and infrastructure as the core city.  If one was to just examine the cities and not the entire metropolitan areas of the Northeast Megalopolis, they would be missing a huge part of the puzzle. Depending on the time period, the demanded resources, and the available technologies heavily influence how metropoloitan areas work, grow, and interact with others.   This can be seen in the charts and tables.  For example, the availability of the automobile and other transportation methods deeply affected how people and industry move and how metropolitan areas influence and interact with one another.

Jess Deady's curator insight, April 17, 2014 10:26 AM

Comparing and contrasting numbers is a huge part of todays world. Looking at this chart, it indicates the size of the population of the whole metropolitan area. The difference in size of cities and of areas differs greatly and the examples provided can show how the area of a city is different that its Metro Area ranking.

Kevin Cournoyer's curator insight, April 8, 2015 1:55 PM

I was a little confused by this graph at first, as I thought it was measuring population rather than the ranking of the respective metro areas. It is still just as telling, however, even if it is not measuring population. Despite the fact that the lines get a bit jumbled at times, it really is a fascinating graph to look at. It is representative of some tangible and traceable geographic trends that occurred as a result of politics or economics. It is especially interesting to note the decrease in rank of many northeastern metro areas and their replacement by metro areas in the western or central parts of the country. This is, of course, symbolic of the westward expansion of the country during the mid to early 1800s and the decline of the northeast as the dominant population center of the country. 

 

There are some things in particular that are interesting to note as an historian. For instance, New York's almost perfectly constant place as the largest metro area in the country says a lot about where the country is centered economically and socially. The rapid emergence of Los Angeles as a major metro area in the early 1900s speaks to the new wave of immigration that was occurring at that time. These trends, though not shown on or accompanied by a map, are very telling. Anyone with a basic knowledge of geography and U.S. history can see why certain things trend the way that they do. This graph also reinforces my belief that geography is an absolutely pivotal part of history. It is important to know where things are when you are talking about them in an historical context, or else you will have no visual reference or background and events may seem confusing or unclear. 

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Regional slang words

Regional slang words | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

How many of these 107 regional slang words do you use?  This week on Mental Floss' YouTube information session, author and vlogger John Green explains 107 slang words specific to certain regions.


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Alyssa Dorr's curator insight, December 12, 2014 8:50 PM

Although this was a rescooped article from another geography profile, when you clicked on it the link didn't come up. Here is the main link: http://mentalfloss.com/article/52558/107-regional-slang-words. A ton of people use slang words, but can you think of one hundred and seven different ones that you use? I know before I watched this video I couldn't. Just the first seven listed in this video were all describing a can of Dr. Pepper. One term they used that I had never heard was a Tonic. This was used in Boston so it was surprising to not here of it, especially when being so close to RI. Other slangs words varied from calling a grinder a hoogie, saying something is Baltic, meaning cold, and streams being called branches, usually in Wisconsin. It was interesting to see all the different words used to describe everyday items all around the world. We may talk a lot of slang, but I can guarantee that no one has heard of all these different slang terms. Great video produced by a funny guy, really enjoyable.  

Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, January 30, 2015 11:10 AM

This was a neat video.  Many of the slang words that I knew about were touched upon, but many were very new to me.  I never knew the "bubbler" originated in Wisconsin.  I thought that was purely a R.I. thing.  Watching the video made me think of how different regions were originally settled by different ethnicity groups between the early 1600's and 1800's, which almost surely led to these slangs, in my opinion.

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, February 4, 2015 6:55 PM

This was a great video describing what people call different items all over the world.  Just in Rhode Island alone, people from different parts of the state refer to items in different ways.  I think it could have been better if he stuck to the United States only.  Its crazy how different people experience things so close in proximity to each other.  It also would have been great to show how different regions in the U.S. say certain words.  He probably could have made a 30 minute video on that alone and it would have been hilarious.

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American Centroid Helps To Trace Path Of U.S. Migration

American Centroid Helps To Trace Path Of U.S. Migration | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it

"David Greene talks to writer Jeremy Miller about the American Centroid. That's the place where an imaginary, flat, weightless and rigid map of the U.S. would balance perfectly if all 300 million of us weighed the exact same."


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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, August 31, 2013 2:23 AM

The centre of population in the USA has moved further inland and southward compared to Australia. Comparing urbanisation in USA and Australia.

Blake Welborn's curator insight, November 11, 2013 10:33 PM

Informative, short podcast that details the changing migration of the US. This allows for the comparison of migration and time and the effects of migration over the years in the US. 

Emily Bian's curator insight, October 17, 2014 7:32 PM

The center of the U.S. population moves about every 10 years. 

In our APHUG textbook, it also talked about the center moving west. It also talks about the patterns and shifts of migration in the U.S going more west and south now, than before. I wonder if the trend will continue?  

It relates because we talked about this map in APHUG class, and it was in the textbook. The population trend is moving Southwest.

This is interesting for next year's APHUG students, because they get to see a population trend right in the US! It's a good article to think about why population trends are the way it is.

2) migration

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Canada: As immigration booms, ethnic enclaves swell and segregate

Canada: As immigration booms, ethnic enclaves swell and segregate | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
More than 600 newcomers per day have arrived in Canada since 2006, and many of them have settled in neighbourhoods like Richmond, B.C.

Via Seth Dixon
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Nathan Chasse's curator insight, January 24, 2014 1:15 PM

This article contains details about the Canadian immigrant population boom, mostly from east Asia, which began in the 90's. Unsurprisingly, many of these immigrants settle into communities with others whom share their culture. These Canadian ethnic enclaves differ from those in the US because most immigrants are choosing suburban areas (where the cost of living is lower) rather than being relegated to an urban "ethnictown." However, these enclaves are not entirely a product of economic equality as the average earnings for a recent immigrant are only 61% of a Canadian-born worker, limiting their ability to move elsewhere.

 

Conversely, the immigrant communities which become economically successful are seeing many of their sons and daughters move away to the city or other suburbs as they are more fully integrated into the Canadian culture and if there is no influx of new immigrants into these enclaves they begin to die out. This seems to indicate that long-standing ethnic enclaves are at least partially the product of economic inequality than a desire to preserve culture.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, January 29, 2014 9:41 AM

This article was interesting because it showed how modern immigration patterns are not that dissimilar from historic patterns.  People come to a new country and they settle in an area that has relatives or familiar people already living there.  The formation of ethnic enclaves is the example.  People are choosing to self-segregate when they immigrate to a new homeland because it is the familiar with in the strange.  Perhaps once the new immigrants have acclimated to Canadian society they may move out of the enclave areas but they also may stay.  It is an interesting example of how people cluster together with similar people when they move to a new country.

Gubert's curator insight, February 11, 2015 5:17 AM

XIPHIAS Immigration is one among the Top Five Immigration Consultants in India according to The siliconindia as Top Five Most Promising Immigration Consultants. www.xiphiasimmigration,com

 

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Interactive maps Mexico-USA migration channels

Interactive maps  Mexico-USA migration channels | AP Human GeographyNRHS | Scoop.it
In several previous posts we have looked at specific migration channels connecting Mexico to the USA: From Morelos to Minnesota; case study of a migrant...

 

An excellent way to show examples of chain migration and the gravity model...students will understand the concepts with concretes examples. These interactive maps have crisp geo-visualizations of the migratory flows.


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Jason Schneider's curator insight, February 3, 2015 4:09 PM

When it comes to ethnic groups in the United States, many of the hispanic/mexican ancestors occur in the southwestern area of the United States. That's obviously because Mexico is southwest of the United States. When it comes to emigrating from Mexico, individuals immigrate to the United States (mostly southwest of the United States) so they can live a different, hopefully better economy. Plus, they try to escape the gang violence and drug violence in Mexico.

Alexa Earl's curator insight, March 14, 2015 1:05 PM

This is a good representation of chain migration.

Devyn Hantgin's curator insight, April 3, 2015 1:46 PM

Migration

This map show the most popular migratory flows of migration from Mexico to the US. 

This ties into our unit about migration because many Mexicans migrate to the US every year. This map shows the patterns and paths of the migration.