Examining Urban and Rural Environments How do we define an environment? Oftentimes an environment is described by its physical features (i.e. Rory lives on the Atlantic Coast, Beth lives in the mountains, Devon lives near the lake). However, there are times when we use cultural characteristics to describe an environment. The cultural characteristic usually used to describe an environment is its infrastructure. Infrastructure refers to the transportation (roads, airports, buses, subways, bike trails, etc…) and communication (telephone, cable television, radio signals, newspapers, internet access, etc…) systems that exist in a region. The infrastructure of a region can also include the types of buildings, power supply, and access to clean water (drinking and plumbing) that exist in a region. There are two unique kinds of environments that are defined by cultural characteristics: urban and rural settings. In the simplest terms, an urban environment is a city and a rural environment is in the country (i.e. small town).
Urban environments have some distinct qualities. Urban environments are