Download The Provisional City: Los Angeles Stories of Architecture by Dana Cuff PDF

By Dana Cuff

The provisional urban is one in all consistent erasure and eruption. via what Dana Cuff calls a ''convulsive city act,'' builders either private and non-private demolish an city web site and disband its population, exchanging it with a few imaginative and prescient of a higher lifestyles that leaves no hint of the previous constitution. Architects carry their very own utopian goals to the method. during this publication Cuff examines these convulsions via underestimated dimensions of architectural and concrete shape: scale and the politics of estate. Scale is in detail tied to measure of disruption: the bigger a project's scale, the larger the upheaval. As either tradition and geography, genuine property performs an both major position in city formation. concentrating on la, Cuff appears at city transformation in the course of the structure and land improvement of large-scale residential initiatives. She demonstrates the inherent instability of very huge websites. Having created perverse renditions of the very difficulties they sought to resolve, for instance, public housing tasks that underwent upheaval within the Nineteen Forties and Fifties are doing so back. Cuff explores 5 situations that span the interval from the Nineteen Thirties, while federal help for slum clearance and public housing brought on convulsions close to downtown, to an important Nineties' mixed-use improvement on certainly one of Los Angeles's final final wetlands. the tale takes us from the sophisticated modernist structure of Richard Neutra to the self-conscious populism of the recent Urbanism. The circumstances remove darkness from the connection of housing structure to problems with race, category, city layout, geography, and political ideology.

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Additional info for The Provisional City: Los Angeles Stories of Architecture and Urbanism

Sample text

46 I No Little Plans 18 Joe Cannon sleeps through the days as he waits in an FHA line for new homes, 1945. more so perhaps than the Case Study architects themselves. While the latter imagined themselves leading the way with new models of residential construction, large-scale builders had already studied (and employed or rejected) new developments in technology (see section VI of this book). Housing warrants attention in an urban political history for a third reason: the house in the neighborhood is where the individual meets the public.

By con34 I No Little Plans trast, new construction was undertaken primarily around outlying population centers like Santa Monica and Hollywood, particularly at their peripheries (Marchand, 1986, p. 113). Thus, a disproportionate number of older housing units was demolished in the center city without substantial rebuilding. Real estate in Los Angeles held a peculiar status which, when coupled with tremendous in-migration, created a unique housing market. The city and California had been leaders in the real estate industry since the turn of the century.

That modern idea met an increasingly postmodern world in which, for example, fragmented politics replaced centralized planning, fostering the independent, convulsive transformation of pieces of the city. Giddens describes the double-edged nature of modernity: opportunities for progress are countered by risks and dangers. Similarly, in urban housing, utopian possibility 13 Houston, 1980. The portion of Freedman’s Town that was severed by the freeway has been redeveloped to become parking lots and a convention center.

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