In the US, things get separated out into giant apartment complexes where everyone rents, and single family home districts, where people lose their shit at the mere whiff of a duplex being built.
There are plenty of condo buildings that are owner owned and also rented out! It's just that the USA has plenty of buildings designed for rentals, which is more about the American market than zoning (residential is residential).
> It's just that the USA has plenty of buildings designed for rentals, which is more about the American market than zoning (residential is residential).
How things are done in the US tends to favor larger developers who can come along and make a bunch of apartments in an area where that has been approved (which tends to be a fairly small portion of the city), rather than a more incremental development style where things slowly transition building by building. This is in large part because of zoning laws that make it difficult to get apartments in many places, so having the means to face the legal challenges is only something those with deeper pockets can handle, rather than a smaller developer who may only wish to develop a few buildings.
The US is not alone in large developers doing large projects. There is nothing else in china, though almost all (if not all) projects are unit for sale (that can and are rented out by the buyer).
Individual units aren't really that common in Europe either, especially in cities (I lived in Lausanne for 2 years also). At best you might have (what the USA calls) duplexes in all but the ritziest of areas. Most of the buildings were fairly large multi unit housing that must have been done by a largish developer at some point; then it is only a matter to deal with the gerrance to do the rental.....
The US is weird in its fixation on detached housing, for sure.
Is it really so weird not to want to hear your neighbors' every amorous evening? Or worry that your kids are bothering them when they run around, or that your work schedule will interfere with the sleep schedule of your neighbors (or vice versa)?
Economics is about the infinite wants of people colliding with limited resources. Given the option, some people would live in a cruddy apartment to be 'close to the action' in a place like San Francisco or New York.
The US is "more planned" in the sense that zoning laws are more strict. More lenient policies in many countries in Europe have more thought put into them, but end up being less strict because that's the way to build nicer cities the way people want them.