How Cities Work : Suburbs, Sprawl, and the Roads Not Taken

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9780292752405: How Cities Work : Suburbs, Sprawl, and the Roads Not Taken

Do cities work anymore? How did they get to be such sprawling conglomerations of lookalike subdivisions, megafreeways, and "big box" superstores surrounded by acres of parking lots? And why, most of all, don't they feel like real communities? These are the questions that Alex Marshall tackles in this hard-hitting, highly readable look at what makes cities work.

Marshall argues that urban life has broken down because of our basic ignorance of the real forces that shape cities-transportation systems, industry and business, and political decision making. He explores how these forces have built four very different urban environments-the decentralized sprawl of California's Silicon Valley, the crowded streets of New York City's Jackson Heights neighborhood, the controlled growth of Portland, Oregon, and the stage-set facades of Disney's planned community, Celebration, Florida.

To build better cities, Marshall asserts, we must understand and intelligently direct the forces that shape them. Without prescribing any one solution, he defines the key issues facing all concerned citizens who are trying to control urban sprawl and build real communities. His timely book will be important reading for a wide public and professional audience.

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About the Author:

A recent Loeb Fellow at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, Alex Marshall is a freelance journalist in New York City, who has written about urban design for the Washington Post, George, Metropolis, Planning, and other national publications.

From Library Journal:

Marshall criticizes New Urbanism for being more about style than substance, but he acknowledges that the more it recognizes the hard truths of regional planning, the more it can become a positive force. A journalist by trade, Marshall writes with wit, reason, and style, effectively driving home his well-researched premise that cities exist and evolve based on transportation systems, the building of wealth, and government guidance or misguidance. He offers few solutions to current urban problems, setting his sights on enlightening the reader about why and how cities evolve. Marshall cites the human craving for simple solutions to complex problems and makes it clear that when people come together to plan a regional city consciously, as they have in Portland, OR, difficult choices must be made. [...] How Cities Work is very strongly recommended for both academic and public libraries as an excellent resource on the history and future of American cities. Drew Harrington, Pacific Univ., Forest Grove, OR
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Book Description University of Texas Press, United States, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Do cities work anymore? How did they get to be such sprawling conglomerations of lookalike subdivisions, megafreeways, and big box superstores surrounded by acres of parking lots? And why, most of all, don t they feel like real communities? These are the questions that Alex Marshall tackles in this hard-hitting, highly readable look at what makes cities work. Marshall argues that urban life has broken down because of our basic ignorance of the real forces that shape cities-transportation systems, industry and business, and political decision making. He explores how these forces have built four very different urban environments-the decentralized sprawl of California s Silicon Valley, the crowded streets of New York City s Jackson Heights neighborhood, the controlled growth of Portland, Oregon, and the stage-set facades of Disney s planned community, Celebration, Florida. To build better cities, Marshall asserts, we must understand and intelligently direct the forces that shape them. Without prescribing any one solution, he defines the key issues facing all concerned citizens who are trying to control urban sprawl and build real communities. His timely book will be important reading for a wide public and professional audience. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780292752405

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Book Description University of Texas Press, United States, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Do cities work anymore? How did they get to be such sprawling conglomerations of lookalike subdivisions, megafreeways, and big box superstores surrounded by acres of parking lots? And why, most of all, don t they feel like real communities? These are the questions that Alex Marshall tackles in this hard-hitting, highly readable look at what makes cities work. Marshall argues that urban life has broken down because of our basic ignorance of the real forces that shape cities-transportation systems, industry and business, and political decision making. He explores how these forces have built four very different urban environments-the decentralized sprawl of California s Silicon Valley, the crowded streets of New York City s Jackson Heights neighborhood, the controlled growth of Portland, Oregon, and the stage-set facades of Disney s planned community, Celebration, Florida. To build better cities, Marshall asserts, we must understand and intelligently direct the forces that shape them. Without prescribing any one solution, he defines the key issues facing all concerned citizens who are trying to control urban sprawl and build real communities. His timely book will be important reading for a wide public and professional audience. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780292752405

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