Thursday, December 9, 2010

Yes, Exactly.

"I have nothing against novelty in buildings--I am quite taken with the glass pyramid at the Louvre and those buildings at La Defense that have the huge holes in the middle--but I just hate the way architects, city planners, and everyone else responsible for urban life seem to have lost sight of what cities are for.  They are for people.  That is obvious enough, but for half a century we have been building cities that are designed for almost anything else:  for cars, for businesses, for developers, for people with money and bold visions who refuse to see cities from ground level, as places in which people must live and function and get around.  Why should I have to walk through a damp tunnel and negotiate two sets of stairs to get across a busy street?  Why should cars be given priority over me?  How can we be so rich and so stupid at the same time?  It is the curse of our century--too much money, too little sense...."

--Bill Bryson, Neither Here Nor There:  Travels in Europe

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