Moses and Modernism and Motor Vehicles


By Dom Nozzi

September 14, 2018

After re-watching the Jane Jacobs documentary last night (Citizen Jane) about the epic battle by Jacobs to save New York City from Robert Moses and his ruinous, anti-city plans, this is part of what occurs to me, tragically:

A hundred years after the catastrophe of Le Corbusier (and the deadening, sterilizing disease of unlovable modernist architecture and “towers in a park” he brought to cities toall over the world), and 60 years after Robert Moses destroyed much of New York City with his “slum” clearance and Superhighways for Happy Cars, the large majority of architects, citizens, and Boulder City Council members are STILL strong proponents of “innovative” or “compelling” modernism – a modernism that prides itself in not fitting in with the neighborhood, designing “towers in the park,” and being cheerleaders for oversized happy-car roads.

Recent examples in Boulder: Boulder Junction, the senior housing project at 311 Mapleton, and what we here in Boulder are likely to get for the hospital redevelopment at Alpine/Broadway/Balsam.

I, on the other hand, side with Jane Jacobs. I am deeply depressed by how little people in Boulder (and elsewhere) know about or support the essential ingredients for a healthy, lovable, sustainable city: Slow speeds. Compact development. Timeless/classical architectural design. And human scale.


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Filed under Politics, Transportation, Urban Design

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