ARC 471s/571s History 4: Urban Design - History and Theory
Since the earliest settlements of ancient Greece and Rome, Western cities have continually evolved in response to historical, sociological and technological factors. Beginning with an overview of cities from antiquity, this course will examine the evolution of towns and cities from Europe to the Americas, from Medieval times to the Renaissance and Enlightenment, through the Industrial Revolution into the 21st Century. It will consider the role of cities in civilization and culture, and the transition from rural-agrarian society to urban-industrial society, with perspectives from urban sociology and urban geography.
Building upon this historical foundation, modern city planning and urban design—two related yet distinct fields—will be considered in perspective. We will review “urban futures of the past,” from the “Garden Cities” movement to “Urban Renewal,” from “The New Urbanism” to today’s transit-oriented ecological city planning and design. The role of architecture in the creation of urban form will be explored. Case studies from Europe, the United States and Latin America will illustrate how we may shape the cities of the future, building by building, into humane environments that are both energy-efficient and desirable places to live.