General Question

AstroChuck's avatar

Do you find your country's cities are becoming homogenized?

Asked by AstroChuck (37461points) June 29th, 2008

This question is for residents of the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands. Also for all you Aussies, Kiwis, and anyone else on Fluther who lives outside the U.S.
As I’ve travelled more and more across the United States I’ve begun to realize how much cities and large towns are becoming more and more alike. Pretty much anywhere you go you find a TGI-TacoStarbuckKingChiliMcBurgerbee’s as well as a Walmart, Home Depot, Barnes & Noble, Target, and a Bed, Bath & Beyond. You pretty much have to find small hamlets and college towns to get away from all this. Not that they are all immune. I’ll admit that there is a certain comfort being in a strange town and finding something familiar. But the cost is way too high.
I’m not saying there isn’t any charm in many US cities (San Francisco, New York, Chicago as well as others are all great places with identities and charms all there own.) but the homogenization is slowly (maybe not so slowly) taking away a lot of that. Smaller towns, once charming, are becoming just like any other place as these big box stores and chain establishments take over the small businesses that once defined these places.
So my question is this:
Have you noticed the homogenization of your country, or is this exclusive to the USA?

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9 Answers

kobe's avatar

Not too much of that in Perth, Australia.

When I lived there, anyways.

bulbatron9's avatar

My milk is!

pattyb's avatar

the worst culprit is Florida, I swear you can not tell one town from the other. It does not help that the geography is practically identical throughout the state. Unlike Europe, it is difficult to find charm in the outskirts of most American cities these days.

shrubbery's avatar

I feel that in Australia, though there are many similar aspects to the major cities, that each of them have enough uniqueness and their own spirit and themes that the homogenization doesn’t bear worrying about. yet.
That being said, I am a teensy bit worried about Hobart, the capital city of the island state Tasmania. Although we are the capital, we are still actually classed as rural because of the population and the area suburban scrawl and such. At the moment, many local business are suffering due to an increase in chains and big businesses. Currently a Direct Factory Outlet is being built near the airport and a new complex is almost complete between the city and the airport, which is already drawing people away from the local shops in the city.

gailcalled's avatar

Wonderful question, Chuck, but it is *homogeneous – (See bulb.)

AstroChuck's avatar

gail, you’re a pip.

scamp's avatar

TGI-TacoStarbuckKingChiliMcBurgerbee’s I love it!!

Knotmyday's avatar

Mexico= Inhomogeneous.
Perhaps it’s the graft-induced poverty. I sure like Starbucks!

Arewethereyet's avatar

I’m from Melbourne, we have all the usual fast food outlets, if you go to the large shopping centres they are all clones, we have a heap of direct factory outlets DFO ( not necessarily cheaper), the supermarkets are dominated by the usual suspects, so yes absolutely.

I did live in a boutique country town where the locals from time to time have to fight the conglomerates, they usual succeed but occasionally they don’t, they now have a subway for instance.

I have travelled fairly extensively and find that particularly western style countries all tend to look and feel a like with some occasional exceptions. A recent exception I have found the South Island of New Zealand.

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