Are Los Angeles and New York City similar?

I live in NYC, and I've always wanted to go to Los Angeles, California. I was wondering if LA is different from NYC, or is it pretty much the same? What's different and what's the same?

8 Answers

    Lv 6
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    They're different. But there are similarities between the two cities, some similarities being trivial and others significant. Both cities are very large and populous, NYC and LA being the two most populous cities in America. Both have world-class sports teams: Lakers in LA and Yankees in NYC. Both cities are centers of finance and commerce (hence the all business skyscrapers) and important players in the TV and movie industry. (A lot of TV and movie production is done in New York today; meanwhile, ironically, a lot of TV and movie production in SoCal these days is actually done outside LA in Culver City, Burbank and Glendale.)

    Both have ocean-front property and beaches, though most of LA is actually somewhat inland. Both cities are subject to horrible traffic jams and slow progress on the highways; for example, I-95 and I-278 in New York can be bad at times right along with surface streets on some days. Both cities belong to states having some of the most aggressive drivers in the U.S.

    Air quality can be comparable in both cities: that is, though you almost certainly won't see smog in NYC that's anywhere near as bad as what you can get in SoCal, I've stood right there in Battery Park City and seen with my own eyes good ol' fashioned brown smog hovering over the Newark area, the kind of smog you see in Southern California. Plus I think I saw a National Weather Service advisory about NYC air quality online just a few days ago. So there are similarities between the two cities.

    There are differences too. It's taken NYC ten years to finally start implementing a letter grade system of sanitary conditions in restaurants; LA pioneered this in 2000 after Joel Grover on KCBS ran the exposé showing hidden camera footage of things like rats and roaches showing up in restaurants, in addition to one segment where a cook is actually picking bones out of chicken with his teeth to serve a boneless chicken entree on the menu there.

    Public transportation in LA is inadequate given the spread-out nature of LA. Subways, light rail, taxis and buses exist, but they're not as helpful as public transportation in New York. The population density of New York is greater, of course. In relative terms, there aren't many skyscaper apartment buildings, condos, and projects in LA though you get plenty of these spread throughout New York. The car culture is different too. People don't honk their horns much in SoCal; instead you might expect a flashing of high beams if anyone really needs to communicate with other motorists on the road. Plus there aren't as many cars and low riders and such in NYC.

    In fact, that leads to the issue of tolls in LA and New York. In LA, there are virtually no tolls on the highways and bridges though there are some turnpikes in Orange County and up north in the Bay Area. In NYC, you're having to dodge and work your way around all the toll booths, unless you have money to spend. $8 bucks to drive from NJ to NYC, $5.50 for some of the intracity tunnels and bridges, and a nightmarish $11 toll if you ever wanted to take the Verrazano Bridge to Staten Island or beyond. But the bridges and tunnels are necessary and necessarily large given the large bodies of water in the city; there ain't so much water in LA. In fact, LA is a semi-desert with not a lot of rainfall (and no snowfall) hence all the dry brush and chaparral you see in TV and movie footage of the Hollywood hills and such.

    Food culture is different. There's "ethnic cuisine" in both cities, but where is the Roscoe's House of Chicken and Waffles, In N Out Burger, Carl's Jr., Del Taco, etc. in New York? And where is all the New York style of pizza in LA?

    Finally, don't pay a lot of mind to the myths of LA being plastic or Californians being laid back. LA is a big city with diverse people, and not all people there are plastic. Futhermore, clearly Californians are not very laid back because there's enough crime, gang violence, and aggressive driving on uncongested freeways in the area to prove this.

    So the two cities are different, but more similar than what you'd get with a comparison of LA and Philadelphia or DC I'd say.

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    NYC is compact and vertical. LA is spread out and horizontal. You can get anywhere in NYC by walking or subway. In LA, it takes 3 hours to get someplace by bus. NYC: Pizza! LA: Mexican food! NYC: Never sleeps. Huey Lewis said it best: "Where else can you do a hundred million things, all at a quarter to 3". LA: Shuts down at 10PM, except for a few bars and clubs. LA: The weather is why we put up with the traffic. It can't be beat. Low humidity

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Like comparing apples to oranges. Both have pluses and minuses. Personally I prefer NYC

  • 1 decade ago

    Never been to Angeles to compare with New York. But there is no place like New York.

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  • 1 decade ago

    transportation wise, its just so so so different! in NYC, you have the subway, LA has nothing of that magnitude

  • 1 decade ago

    They're VERY different.

    I'm in L.A. and I rather be in NYC anyday.

  • 1 decade ago

    NYC is much safer.

  • ?
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    No, they are different in terms of attractions and destinations.

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