Saturday, March 24, 2012

Expressways dismembered poor neighborhoods, destroying local communities; they also enabled both the dispossessed (and the wealthy who had also fled) to return to work in the inner city - to sustain, and to bleed it, respectively.

Lucy Lippard, The Lure of the Local: Senses of Place in a Multicentered Society, New York: The New Press, 1997, p 202.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

social space: modernism as circulation, postmodernism as atomization and rootedness

The central problem for [architect Leon] Krier is that modernist urban planning works mainly though mono-functional zoning.  As a result, circulation of people between zones by way of artificial arteries becomes the central preoccupation of the planner, generating an urban pattern that is, in Krier's judgement, 'anti-ecological' because it is wasteful of time, energy, and land [...]

Krier contrasts this situation with the 'good city' (by its nature ecological) in which 'the totality of urban functions' are provided within 'compatible and pleasant walking distances.'  Recognizing that such an urban form 'cannot grow by extension in width and height' but only 'through multiplication,' Krier seeks a city form made up of 'complete and finite urban communities,' each constituting an independent urban quarter within  a large family of urban quarters, that in turn make up 'cities within a city.'

From David Harvey, The Condition of Postmodernity, Cambridge: Blackwell, 1990, p. 67