Linear City


Toronto is a linear city. Businesses rarely form clusters; instead, they’re spread out along long roads backed by inward-facing residential tracts. The city’s design feels optimized for movement: not keeping you in a neighbourhood – instead, moving you far away, fast away.

It’s a form that’s perpetuated by history, a car-oriented culture, neighbourhood associations and recently, planning policy – and I think it does the city a disservice. Compared to cities like New York – full of fractal neighbourhoods that fold in and invite repeated exploration, Toronto’s layout limits variety per acre. It saddens me every time I return.

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