In Batman Begins, Gotham has a futuristic/fictional and run down look: think of Oldtown, the trains built by the Wayne Corporation etc.
In The Dark Knight Rises, Gotham looks like plain old real world NYC - we don't see the trains anymore. Oldtown is just a standard poor neighborhood. Lots of the locations used in the movie are easily identified as real world NYC locations: the stock exchange or East River bridges for example.
My question is: Why did Nolan change Gotham city from a shady fictional more cartoon-like town to plain old NYC?
Edit: The examples from Batman Begins and The Dark Knight Rises were just for illustration; I didn't intend to limit the question to those two movies.
Edit 2: I specifically want to know why Gotham was changed from a cartoon-like city in Begins to an almost real-world NYC in The Dark Knight Rises (via not so cartoon-like but not yet real-world like Chicago in The Dark Knight Rises). Why it's NYC or Chicago is not so important for me. But why, e.g., were the trains which featured prominently in Begins gone in The Dark Knight Rises? There was only a very short in-universe time-span between the events of the two movies, yet Gotham changed drastically.