Cities are more important as cultural entities than their mere function as dormitories and industrial sites. Yet, the understanding of what makes a city ‘alive’ and appealing in cultural terms is still hotly contested - why are some cities so much more interesting, popular and successful than others? In this engaging discussion in the text City Life, Adrian Franklin takes the reader on a tour of contemporary western cities exploring their historical development and arguing that it is the transformative, ritual and performative qualities of successful cities that makes a difference. Emphasizing the importance of experience, the book represents the fluid complexity of the city as a living space, an environment and a posthumanist space of transformation. It will be of interest to all those engaging with the difficulties of urban life in sociology, human geography, tourism and cultural studies departments.
Chapter 6: The Ecological City
The Ecological City
Towards an Ecological City
Up until the 1970s, the various eras of modernity and the cities that were built during them carry the stamp of their great architects, planners and designers: the city became synonymous with their vision and their names. Hence we have distinctive eras and cities dominated by Haussmann, Mies van der Rohe, Lloyd Wright, Howard and Le Corbusier and Seidler. Since the 1970s there have been many important architects but none of them have become or even sought to become the leading edge of a future-orientated, technologically driven project let alone become a synonym for their own times. This is very significant. None of them have seen their work, individually or collectively, as the production of a blueprint ...