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Boom Cities Architect Planners and the Politics of Radical Urban Renewal in 1960s Britain

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Boom Cities Architect Planners and the Politics of Radical Urban Renewal in 1960s Britain by Saumarez Smith, Otto, 9780198836407
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  • ISBN: 9780198836407 | 0198836406
  • Cover: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 5/21/2019
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Boom Cities is the first published history of the profound transformations of British city centres in the 1960s. It has often been said that urban planners did more damage to Britain's cities than even the Luftwaffe had managed, and this study details the rise and fall of modernist urban planning, revealing its origins and the dissolution of the cross-party consensus, before the ideological smearing that has ever since characterized the high-rise towers, dizzying ring roads, and concrete precincts that were left behind.

The rebuilding of British city centres during the 1960s drastically affected the built form of urban Britain, including places ranging from traditional cathedral cities through to the decaying towns of the industrial revolution. Boom Cities uncovers both the planning philosophy, and the political, cultural, and legislative background that created the conditions for these processes to occur across the country.

Boom Cities reveals the role of architect-planners in these transformations. The book also provides an unconventional account of the end of modernist approaches to the built environment, showing it from the perspective of planning and policy elites, rather than through the emergence of public opposition to planning.

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