Designing the American City: Civic Aspirations and Urban Form

Semester: 

Spring

Taught: Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Spring 2018

An interpretive look at the American city in terms of changing attitudes toward urban life. City and suburb are experienced as the product of design and planning decisions informed by cultural and economic forces, and in relationship to utopian and pragmatic efforts to reinterpret urban traditions in search of contemporary alternatives. Topics include: persistent ideals such as the single-family home, attitudes toward public and private space, the rise of suburbs and suburban sprawl, cycles of disinvestment and renewed interest in urban centers, and impacts of mobility and technology on settlement patterns.