Richard Rogers, one of Britain's leading architects vividly outlines the environmental disaster facing the world, and presents some novel solutions for planning and building cities to overcome the barriers. Of particular interest are the ideas for energy conservation, the use of public space to enhance the public environment, and the ways to integrate public transport into city design. There is a scathing attack on urban sprawl and its wasteful use of land and resources, and a vision of high density cities, combining efficiency with an effective community. One slight weakness of the book is the price to pay for its wide coverage - there is a lack of detail on some of the proposals, and diagrams are sometimes weak on annotations. Also recommended: Cities for a Small Country - focusing more on the problems facing Britain, rather than the world as a whole, particularly the developing countries.
A bit ho-hum. Not very compelling, with lots of illustrations that are rather underwhelming. The examples are dated and related to things which have already turned out differently - the plans for Trafalgar Square in London, or the South Bank, for example. Not really worth the time I spent reading it. Might have been good for someone coming to this subject for the first time, I suppose.
Handy little summary of the main findings of the 1999 Urban Task Force. A little too much like a manifesto for my liking (i.e. too generalized) but its heart was in the right place. A shame nothing came of it (how could it given the current blind acceptance of neo-liberal dogma). An updated version (to take account of more recent knowledge relating to key Anthropocene issues and scaled up low impact solutions, and a more aggressive stance on the menaces of urban motor vehicles) with some more tangible examples would not go amiss!