Emergent Urbanism

Rediscovering Urban Complexity


An empty city for sale

If we needed any further confirmation that China is the champion builder of sprawl in this decade (sorry America, you don't even come close against things like Dubai Marina), this reporter traveled to an entire city built by developers in Inner Mongolia, that, it turns out, no one wants to move to because there is no economy there, as compared to the traditional city down the road.

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Review of Radiant City

There is a scene early in the 2006 mockumentary Radiant City that provides the key explanation to the morphology of suburban sprawl. Our favorite writer James Howard Kunstler sits on a bench in a community bike trail that is enclosed in two rows of chain link fence in order to, I presume, secure it from the high-capacity arterial road that runs alongside it. The experience is vaguely what it must have been like to patrol the Berlin Wall, had it been encircled by an expressway.

A conversation about the geometry of nowhere

In response to my previous article, Bruce Liedstrand of Community Design Strategies in Paris writes,

I read with interest your essay on The Geometry of Nowhere because I divide my time between Paris and Silicon Valley (the site of your Cupertino Target store example). After re-reading the essay, I am puzzled. I hear your frustration with narrow sidewalks, but I am lost in understanding your concept of “place”.

The geometry of nowhere

I hate sidewalks.

A cuter form of sprawl

The National Post reports about the failures of Canada's most famous New Urbanist experience, Cornell in the Toronto Suburbs.

The challenge of dense sprawl

Further comment

Please send your comments by email at mthl@mthl.info, or find me on Twitter @mathieuhelie. The commenting system is closed at the moment as no measures can hold back blog spamming bots.

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