On the Form of the City

There were some very interesting and provocative discussions about Downtown development recently, hosted at The Conversation (and also here) and AntiRust in particular.

I don't have much to add to the posts and the comments, except this: In talking about the future of downtown Pittsburgh (does it have one? what is it? what should it be?), it may be important to distinguish between the urban theory that guides the conversation, on the one hand, and particular development plans (or "no-development" plans) on the table (particular stores, restaurants, buildings, architectural styles, etc.), on the other. Both are important, and they're related, but they represent different levels of the discussion.

A reading suggestion: Kevin Lynch, A Theory of Good City Form, republished in paper as Good City Form.


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Pittsblog 2.0 is written by Mike Madison, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Send email to michael.j.madison[at]gmail.com. Mike also blogs at Madisonian.net, on law and technology. Chris Briem of Null Space drops by from time to time.

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