Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream / Edition 1by Duany, Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, Jeff Speck
Pub. Date: 03/20/2000
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
A manifesto by America's most controversial and celebrated town planners, proposing an alternative model for community design. There is a growing movement in North America to put an end to suburban sprawl and to replace the automobile-based settlement patterns of the past fifty years with a return to more traditional planning principles. This movement stems not only from the realization that sprawl is ecologically and economically unsustainable but also from a growing awareness of sprawl's many victims: children, utterly dependent on parental transportation if they wish to escape the cul-de-sac; the elderly, warehoused in institutions once they lose their driver's licenses; the middle class, stuck in traffic for two or more hours each day. Founders of the Congress for the New Urbanism, Andres Duany and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk are at the forefront of this movement, and in Suburban Nation they assess sprawl's costs to society, be they ecological, economic, aesthetic, or social. It is a lively, thorough, critical lament, and an entertaining lesson on the distinctions between postwar suburbia-characterized by housing clusters, strip shopping centers, office parks, and parking lots-and the traditional neighborhoods that were built as a matter of course until mid-century. It is an indictment of the entire development community, including governments, for the fact that America no longer builds towns. Most important, though, it is that rare book that also offers solutions. 100 Illustrations Appendixes/Bibliography Andres Duany and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk lead a firm that has designed more than 200 new neighborhoods and community revitalization plans, most famously, Seaside, Florida. Jeff Speck is director of town planning for the firm.
- Farrar, Straus and Giroux
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- 1 ED
- Product dimensions:
- 8.23(w) x 8.31(h) x 1.19(d)
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Once in a while a book comes along that helps put a framework around thought and ideas already in ones mind. Suburban nation truly deserves all the praise it has received from the academic as well as the non-academic community. It helped me understand why I feel more comfortable, secure and happy in urban centers and lost, confused and unsafe in suburban sprawl. Even though there are some definitely biased and skewed examples and anecdotes used to support the authors claims. Overall I highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in getting a better understanding of urban design or in just realizing how our living environment affects our social and cultural well being.