KOSTOF SPIRO THE CITY SHAPED PDF

Kostof has a dizzying array of examples of how seemingly similar patterns can result in very different cityscapes, in the same culture and even in the same city. This two-way street sorry between people and urban building blocks informs the organization of the book. Kostof will take a topological concept, like that of the "organic plan" as opposed to that soulless grid; ironically, deliberately "organic" patterns usually require much more advance planning than a grid, and as a result put more constraints on the lives of residents , describe its typical usage and variations throughout history, and enumerate examples of how different societies have used that idea, what it meant to them, and what the eventual effects were on the lives of the people who had to live in the end product. What is it that makes designers of social systems think that they need to design cities as well? What makes them think it will be effective? You see repeatedly cities designed as market towns, military camps, defensive bastions, population overflow catchments, religious centers, administrative capitals, communes, ports, and all sorts of things trying to find their identity while being prodded from all directions, and the way that cities grow and change over time is really interesting to see, especially with all the neat illustrations.

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Kostof has a dizzying array of examples of how seemingly similar patterns can result in very different cityscapes, in the same culture and even in the same city. This two-way street sorry between people and urban building blocks informs the organization of the book. Kostof will take a topological concept, like that of the "organic plan" as opposed to that soulless grid; ironically, deliberately "organic" patterns usually require much more advance planning than a grid, and as a result put more constraints on the lives of residents , describe its typical usage and variations throughout history, and enumerate examples of how different societies have used that idea, what it meant to them, and what the eventual effects were on the lives of the people who had to live in the end product.

What is it that makes designers of social systems think that they need to design cities as well? What makes them think it will be effective? You see repeatedly cities designed as market towns, military camps, defensive bastions, population overflow catchments, religious centers, administrative capitals, communes, ports, and all sorts of things trying to find their identity while being prodded from all directions, and the way that cities grow and change over time is really interesting to see, especially with all the neat illustrations.

Unfortunately the book has a really bad and weak ending - Kostof hates skyscrapers and lauds attempts to reduce them, in passages as meaningless as they are full of high-flown rhetoric. He puts in a lot of confused ideological-aesthetic verbiage about how skyscrapers are symbols of the excesses of capitalism and how they destroy the character of cities.

I personally think that skyscrapers not only look really cool, they are incredibly useful for allowing large numbers of people to get together and make livings without having to sprawl out in all directions. Kostof does not deign to actually run any numbers on how expensive and environmentally damaging his anti-skyscraper stance is, but if you stop reading before that section or just stick to looking at its pictures you will have read a very interesting and comprehensive survey on an underappreciated topic.

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Arashitaur Christopher Hillard rated it really liked it Oct 19, Kostof sshaped draws from other urban thinkers, like Lynch, Jacobs and Wirth to develop a thorough framework in which to set his argument for the historical patterns that developed city form from as far back as there is recorded data. For the ancient Maya, the civic center was arranged with strict adherence to the fundamental religious and palace structures, to the degree of which the sun, moon and stars were crucial to the orientation of the temples and courts. William Hsu rated it really liked it Feb 05, Spiro Konstantine Kostof was a leading architectural clty, and professor at the University of California, Berkeley. What is it that makes designers of social systems think that they need to design cities as well? Kostof seeks to explain the evolution of urban design through sociological patterns of human settlements dating back to Maya and Mesopotamia. This rich theory set up in the introduction invites the reader to expand their thinking of urban design beyond the limits of modern city form.

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