From: Lloyd Rubidge <lloyd@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 1 Sep 1996 21:13:13 +0200
Mark Darrall wrote: (the following with lots of cuts....)
> > Putting Some 'City' Back in the Suburbs.
> > Sounds Interesting -- Too Bad It Doesn't Work
> > The problem is that, while these developments mimic the old
> > 19th century streetcar neighborhoods, they keep the same
> > transportation system that produces conventional suburbs.
> > In other words, current New Urban developments follow the
> > standard pattern for subdivision development. They sit
> > right off a main highway. They often have but a single
> > entrance. They have winding roads that are just slightly
> > less confusing than cul-de-sacs.
> Well, that's the problem, ain't it? They aren't designed properly! This is
> probably the example of NU-as-developer-tool that we're all railing against.
> Winding streets aren't urban! One entry off the freeway isn't urban---it's a
> gated compound (oops, sorry. "Community"). If it's gonna act like a small
> town, it's gotta be built like one.
I agree completely. I read a book called "Snow Crash" a while back, a
Sci-Fi book with a very particular view of future urbanism. The entire
country subdivided (minus the freeway system) into franchised
communities called claves with autonomous politics and security. Yes,
"franchised", you could buy into Mr Lee's Hong Kong for example. In some
areas of South Africa things are already going that way. Entire
neighbourhoods created under some odd understanding of NU, with an
automatic gate at the front keeping out "the enemy". These claves are
started and run by large developers.
> > As a result, it should not surprise us that such places are
> > not changing how people live. A resident will still drive
> > to a Wal-Mart for a toaster or a McDonald's for a
> > hamburger.
Another thought: NU is not about changing the way people live. That went
out in the 60s. NU is about giving people/communities opportunities to
change, opportunities to create opportunities. NU is about removing the
controls which force a parent to give up work if they want their
children to be able to have a life. Removing the controls wich force 4
cars per family. Which force shopping at Malls with hectares of parking