Carchitecture: When The Car and The City Collide by Jonathan Bell

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Carchitecture: When The Car and The City Collide by Jonathan Bell

4to. pp. 128. profusely illustrated. paperback. [Boston]: Birkhauser, [2001].


ISBN-10: 3764364548 / ISBN-13: 9783764364540


The car and the city have collided. Carchitecture examines the fallout from this near-fatal impact, sifting through the debris of movements, debates, solutions and situations, searching for a new direction. This collision was not inevitable. At first, the car was welcomed into the city as the ultimate transport solution; re-building, re-planning and public policy were all geared to an automotive future. We are now far removed from those innocent days, left reeling from pollution, grown jaded by gridlock and thinking fond thoughts of the world we left behind. Today, automobiles and architecture appear as natural sparring partners, forever unable to settle their differences. Yet there is a clear need for a way forward. Despite our protestations to the contrary, we remain enslaved to our cars. Manufacturers have learned to fracture production, building a dizzying array of models for every conceivable need, lifestyle choice and niche market. Consumption grows steadily, capacity edges upwards. The promised architectural vision of a car-friendly future has either stalled or vanished. Carchitecture argues that cars and architecture should rein themselves back from the brink of disaster, straighten the fender and jump-start the debate. Each has much to offer the other, not only in terms of technology and aesthetics, but also in the need to reconcile the car's social role with its pariah status. With its focus firmly on the need to design better urban environments, Carchitecture is a journey through our most familiar landscapes and the ideas which are helping to shape their future