Some cities create housing for growing populations by building taller buildings while other cities have opted to build on wider areas of land. Which solution is better?

Many cities today are expanding upwards to accommodate surging urban populations. In my opinion, this can help preserve nearby land for other uses and is a better solution than encouraging urban sprawl. Some would argue that tall cities present challenges for inhabitants and a spread-out city offers better quality of life. Condensed urban areas with lots of tall apartment blocks, like in New York City or Shanghai, are famously difficult to live in due to the effects of overcrowding on sanitation, safety, and traffic conditions. In contrast, decentralised cities like Los Angeles and Nashville allow for the development of unique individual neighborhoods, more space for residential construction and a reduction of the urban issues listed above. Individuals living in these cities often report greater feelings of satisfaction and many ‘transplants’ move to such cities because of the better living standards. However, those in favour of taller buildings can logically point out the resultant benefits for the area around a city. It is often hard to check the growth of economically important cities and that can lead to massive urban sprawl, as is in the case around Mexico City and Tokyo. By building more skyscrapers, the surrounding area can be preserved or used in another way. Pristine natural lands can be designated as national parks. If the city requires more food to feed its population, there could be proximately located farms with fast delivery times. This surplus land could also be turned into quiet suburban towns to give residents the choice of raising a family outside the city and still earning a good wage and having easy access to the cultural benefits of large metropolises. In conclusion, horizontal cities facilitate some positive living conditions but taller cities make more sense in the modern world. It is, nonetheless, important to strike a balance and mitigate the issues caused by growing urban populations with quality infrastructure.
Submitted by Dũng Nguyễn on
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