Suburbia

Book Review: The Charms of Suburbia

This is a link to a review on the online Magazine: Metropolis.

Paradise-PlannedI was attracted to this as I believe in suburbia but get very annoyed (or is that angry) about the way current planning and development agencies have gone about ruining concept of suburbia through their lack of care for developing sustainable settlements.

This new book is a comprehensive history that rescues the garden suburb from the periphery of urban design, and repositions it at the heart of the debate on cities.

 

to quote from the article:

Robert A.M. Stern is nothing if not counter intuitive. How else do you explain—in an increasingly digital and urban-centric world—his recently released book, a 1,072-page tome, containing more than 3,000 images, on the history of  the garden suburb? Paradise Planned: The Garden Suburb and the Modern City (the Monacelli Press, 2013) was written with longtime, in-house collaborators David Fishman and Jacob Tilove, who also worked with Stern on the ?fth volume of  the architect’s epic New York series.

Paradise Planned is similarly expansive. “The book grew like Topsy,” Stern says. “We’d think we had all the examples down, and a new one would pop up. So it just got bigger and bigger. And I thought: if we’re going to do this book, we really ought to do it as the de?nitive text. Now, it’s not forever text. People will always be adding things.

But this is a pretty comprehensive view.” I recently talked to Stern about his new book, the folly of “landscape urbanism,” and the lessons learned from the garden suburb.

click here for the Metropolis article in full – and lots of pictures.

It is not a cheap book – I have it bookmarked, so I am yet to decide.

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Paul Costigan, 2 March 2014

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