The Well-Tempered City: What Modern Science, Ancient Civilizations, and Human Nature Teach Us About the Future of Urban Life

The Well-Tempered City: What Modern Science, Ancient Civilizations, and Human Nature Teach Us About the Future of Urban Life

by Jonathan F. P. Rose


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2017 PROSE Award Winner: Outstanding Scholarly Work by a Trade Publisher

In the vein of Jane Jacobs’s The Death and Life of Great American Cities and Edward Glaeser’s Triumph of the City, Jonathan F. P. Rose—a visionary in urban development and renewal—champions the role of cities in addressing the environmental, economic, and social challenges of the twenty-first century.

Cities are birthplaces of civilization; centers of culture, trade, and progress; cauldrons of opportunity—and the home of eighty percent of the world’s population by 2050. As the 21st century progresses, metropolitan areas will bear the brunt of global megatrends such as climate change, natural resource depletion, population growth, income inequality, mass migrations, education and health disparities, among many others.

In The Well-Tempered City, Jonathan F. P. Rose—the man who “repairs the fabric of cities”—distills a lifetime of interdisciplinary research and firsthand experience into a five-pronged model for how to design and reshape our cities with the goal of equalizing their landscape of opportunity. Drawing from the musical concept of “temperament” as a way to achieve harmony, Rose argues that well-tempered cities can be infused with systems that bend the arc of their development toward equality, resilience, adaptability, well-being, and the ever-unfolding harmony between civilization and nature. These goals may never be fully achieved, but our cities will be richer and happier if we aspire to them, and if we infuse our every plan and constructive step with this intention.

A celebration of the city and an impassioned argument for its role in addressing the important issues in these volatile times, The Well-Tempered City is a reasoned, hopeful blueprint for a thriving metropolis—and the future.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062234728
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 09/13/2016
Pages: 480
Sales rank: 1,064,802
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.70(d)

About the Author

JONATHAN F. P. ROSE works with cities and not-for-profits to plan and build affordable and mixed-income housing and cultural, health, and educational centers. Recognized for creating communities that literally heal both residents and neighborhoods, Rose is one of the nation’s leading thinkers on the integration of environmental, social, and economic solutions to issues facing cities today.

For his work as founder of the investment, development, and urban planning firm Jonathan Rose Companies, he has received awards from the Urban Land Institute, the American Institute of Architects, the American Planning Association, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, among many others. With Diana Calthorpe Rose, he is cofounder of the Garrison Institute and the creator of its Climate Mind and Behavior program.

Table of Contents

Preface: The Well-Tempered City vii

Introduction: The Answer is Urban 1

Part 1 Coherence

Chapter 1 The Metropolitan Tide 31

Chapter 2 Planning for Growth 67

Chapter 3 Sprawl and Its Discontent 99

Chapter 4 The Dynamically Balancing City 129

Part 2 Circulatity

Chapter 5 The Metabolism of Cities 159

Chapter 6 Water Is a Terrible Thing to Waste 193

Part 3 Resilience

Chapter 7 Natural Infrastructure 223

Chapter 8 Green Buildings, Green Urbanism 251

Part 4 Community

Chapter 9 Creating Communities of Opportunity 279

Chapter 10 The Cognitive Ecology of Opportunity 315

Chapter 11 Prosperity, Equality, and Happiness 339

Part 5 Compassion

Chapter 12 Entwinement 381

Author's Note and Acknowledgments 399

Notes 403

Selected Bibliography 421

Index 443

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