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International :

  • crucibles of hazard - mega-cities and disasters in transition - the full 544 pages of selected papers discussing future hazards for big cities.
  • century city - Art and Culture in the Modern Metropolis. This 2001 exhibition examined in detail 9 cities in 9 different eras. The website archive is quite interesting. [04/04]
  • christopher alexander - read parts I and II of "The City is not a Tree" at this free branch of the RUDI website.
  • - resources and discussion board. As of March 2002 this site has "purged" all architecture links so now it's only planning-related links. [03/02].
  • emerging world cities in pacific asia - full text of a book about how asian and oceanic cities are responding to global economic restructuring.
  • european archive of contemporary public space - informative site with many urban interventions discussed - indexed by city.
  • Jan Gehl - you can read the first achapter of "Life between Buildings" at the RUDI site.
  • levittown: documents of an ideal american suburb - a photo essay by Peter Bacon Hales of the University of Illinois.
  • new colonist - a magazine that looks at the city from the point of view of the footpath (ie small observations in great detail).
  • parole - odd site from the University of Genoa with links to many cutting edge urban project books, some online.
  • rudi - english resource for urban design information - now they required paid registration to access most parts of the site - there is a section with some pretty good free stuff by the likes of Christopher Alexander and Jan Gehl. [LINK UPDATE 09/02]
  • urban drift - a 2002 effort, the intent of which was to be, "a network for the development of trans-cultural urban strategies. Concentrating on urban voids, gaps and residual, or peripheral zones and public spaces, members of URBAN DRIFT act as tacticians for a contemporary urban praxis, developing a discourse within Berlin as one of the primary cities of flux." Worth a look. [07/03]
  • urban regeneration - topical links page at the Guardian newspaper. The links are mainly to english sites.
  • mike davis - all in his head - a criticle article about Mike Davis, L.A's famous urban critic, in Salon Magazineafter the release of his book "Ecology of Fear", with links on to similar articles, 1998.
  • plazas and privately owned public spaces - a city review essay describing in great detail the deterioration of plaza spaces in Manhatten. Many photos and links on to articles about the buildings mentioned.
  • teen urbanism - a loudpaper article on urbanism at the turn of the century. [03/05]
  • neighbourhood lockdown - SF Weekly article (12/99) discusses a proposal to build the first gated community in the Mission District. "As of 1997, 20,000 gated communities, comprising an estimated 3 million units, had sprung up across the country..".

  • paranoid chic - the aesthetics of surveillance - a loudpaper article on paranoia and fashion. "The fashionability of surveillance is nostalgic. It is a will to return to an acutely visual world. Stripped of any functional surveillance, Paranoid Chic operates on the level of aesthetic." [LINK FIX 09/02]
  • victory city - this project dates back to the 1930s and continues to grow. This high-rise city takes gating to its extreme by. Take with salt: "In the far distant future, perhaps 100 to 150 million years from now when 90% of the people in the U.S. are living in Victory Cities, the major portion of all crimes committed will be concentrated amongst the remaining 10% of the people still living in the old obsolete cities. This will enable the entire might of the nation... concentrate on the 10% instead of being spread thin amongst 100% of the people."
  • AURORA <<Aurora has been designed specifically for adults. They are the sole target audience. So, if we have children visiting Aurora we insist on parental supervision when they are in common areas such as a swimming pool or health club.>> A weird new type of ghetto, on sale now on the Gold Coast. [08/02]
  • Architects Call For Design Review
    Institute goes off at obese project homes.
    (RAIA 08.02.04)
  • Room for improvement on the fringe
    The Oz has a brief look at the McMansion phenomenon, getting the NSW Government Architect to say, "obviously you can't have the best designers doing each individual project home". Why not?
    (Oz 07.02.04)
  • Carr in homely protest
    Carr thinks McMansions are ugly. The HIA doesn't, and is pissed about architects.
    (Oz 06.02.04)
  • Let there be light - and a tree or two, please
    McMansions on the way out at AV Jennings - no more formal dining rooms, no more federation style. Wow! But their website hints that ye olde worlde is alive and well. AV JENNINGS
    (SMH 05.02.04)
  • 60 Minutes investigated obesity in housing in 2006. They visited the Gold Coast to find the ridiculous... "MICHELLE: Our first home was 12 squares. PETER HARVEY: How big is this one, Michelle? MICHELLE: Ah, 260 — so we've come a fair way." Full transcript and video. [07/06]
  • Prince to build new traditional village - Charles to build second nostalgic village, harking back to a time when royalty was respected.
    (Independent UK 12.01.03)
  • at work in the fields of the mouse - a review of an ethnography of that newurbanist Disney town called Celebration, in Florida, designed by Robert Stern. Quote from a disgruntled local: "I've had enough of this, I've got pixie dust coming out of my ass!" (Atlantic 09/99)"
  • INTBAU - Prince Charles' views on architecture (make it traditional) are well represented by INTBAU, of which he is patron. The clunky acronym stands for International Network for Traditional Building, Architecture & Urbanism. Contains interesting articles on the World Trade Centre and Dresden. [01/03]
  • jane jacobs - a september 2000 interview (she's 83 now) with the author of "The Death and Life of Great American Cities", the textbook for the new urbanist movement.
  • new urbanism - New Urban News - a journal into "traditional neighbourhood development".
  • new urbanism - a PBS special report containing articles and a forum to accompany a TV program.
  • Beauty under threat from land grabs - Auckland sprawl, the RMA, natural landscape studies. "It is the heritage of New Zealanders to live in scenic settings" - well that's one way of looking at the rapid rolling out of lifestyle blocks over the city's outskirts.(NZH 27.7.03)
  • divided we sprawl - An Atlantic Monthly article looking into the suburban dilemmas faced by the USA. Also links onwards to other 'sprawl' sites. (12/99)
  • Levittown, The first of the drab american 'burbs,turned fifty in 2002. The Levit Brothers used to build 35 houses a day. Hardly time for lunch. [06/02]
  • Location Efficient Mortgages - at a time when the news is telling us gloomily that there is no hope for Gen Xers looking to buy property in the inner cities, perhaps we should look offshore. This is a novel way of thinking about mortgages and combatting sprawl.
  • Love Thy Neighbour - news - Sydney sprawl. <<Contrary to what we were told, suburbia is no more at home in this great dry continent than beef or cotton-farming... the attempt to enshrine it as some kind of inalienable right is about as community-minded as hosing the concrete in a 100-year dry.>>(SMH 29.11.02)
  • NASA is watching urban sprawl, and it's not pretty. (NASA article 11.10.02)
  • Natural and anthropogenic hazards in the Sydney sprawl: Is the city sustainable? - John Handmer 1999 - a well written and illustrated paper about Sydney's planning history and the problems the city is now facing.
  • New suburbia: crowded land of the giants - Sydney's McMansions and the Inverse Donut Effect. "Most of the popular builders offer six or more facades that can be fitted to the same interior. You can whack on faux French Provincial, Tuscan, Georgian, Federation, Victoriana, Colonial, American Colonial, Australian traditional or modern." (SMH 26.08.03)
  • Sprawl - a web installation showing changes in North Canton in Ohio. Intriguing snippets of audio interviews, panoramas, and text. "What is the role of suburban expansion at the turn of the second millennium, and how is it changing the character of the American landscape and the sense of identity we ascribe to it?"
  • street protest architecture - dissent space in australia - Gregory Cowan writes about protest structures. "Subverting the official and institutional state architecture, which is massive white and permanent, this architecture of counterculture is instead light, colourful and spontaneous." BAD SUBJECTS JAN 2004 [04/04]
  • City Alliance - An organisation set up by the World Bank and the UN in 1999 to reduce poverty in rapidly urbanising countries.


Australia :
  • australian housing and urban research institute - AHURI - a partially government-funded institute - not much to read on site.
  • a century of housing - A short history of the house in Sydney, by Graham Jahn. Sydney Morning Herald 8/2000
  • sustainable urban design and climate - Bureau of Meteorology site explaining the impact of urban design on climate.
  • department of infrastructure - this link takes you to the Victorian DOI's urban design resources, in the form of many downloadable pdf files.
  • pattern book - The New South Wales government patternbook for residential flats is proving to be a web success story (in terms of traffic at least). [12/03]
  • urban design forum - newsy urban design magazine beaming out of Melbourne - free to view on site. Contains upcoming conferences and lots of articles from around the world.
  • urban frontiers program - the University of Western Sydney brings you this subsite, which intends to, "improve understanding of, and provide innovative responses to, urban challenges and opportunities." Many downloads available of newsletters and essays, many foccussing on Western Sydney. [07/03]
New Zealand :
  • waitemata waterfront - Auckland City Council information on the competition (now closed) for the redevelopment of the Britomart precinct.
Quote :

<<The role of government has diminished while the task of place-making has largely been handed to the development industry. And, naturally, the primary concern of developers is not to make fine places, but to make money. All that government has kept for itself is the right to make the rules that will establish the broad outlines of the development. When those rules are broken or eroded, government credibility suffers and the knee-jerk "anti-development" reaction is only reinforced.>>

<<Today's suburban castles may become tomorrow's white elephants, as empty nesters sell up and downsize. House sizes are growing at the rate of an additional powder room each year.>>