What Kind of City Do We Want? Victor Gruen, Theories and Projects. Amid the mid-century debates surrounding the development and transformation of the American city and suburb, a renowned architect-planner, Victor Gruen (1903-80), became one of the most important figures in this rapidly changing context. Tremendously influential during the 1950’s and 60s, Gruen’s work was driven by urban planning problems created by the rapid onset of new suburbias, urban highways, and the subsequent deterioration of existing downtowns. Dubbed the “pioneer of the shopping center,” Gruen envisioned the suburban mall as a new type of urban public space in the new dispersed residential fabric. In this book, which outlines the theories and projects that mark a thirty year period, Alex Wall presents the largely overlooked story of conflict between the ambition of an architect and the transformation of American society, its cities, and its landscape. Through a roughly chronological structure, “Victor Gruen, From Urban Shop to New City” fills a gap in the architectural character of postwar America, as well as provides insight into the ongoing validity of Gruen’s theories and work within current discourse of the contemporary city.
Pub Date: 10/2005
Size: 8.54h x 6.70w x 1.13d