Top critical review
4 people found this helpful
on September 1, 2010
This book is definitely not a casual read. Unfortunately, our professor chose this book for our History in Urban Planning course. Kostof wrote this book using big words, it seems, trying to prove his mastery and great command of the English language. Making it worst is his inference from numerous examples that baffles the beginning learner with no previous historical knowledge of urban forms. It takes three hours to read something that should only take one and you will only understand 35% of what was read.
If you live in the U.S. and care about improving city planning in our country, please read Duany's Suburban Nation, Jeff Speck's Walkable City, and take urban design courses that include Form Based Codes. Our country has THE worst urban planners because the education system took urban design out of the planning curriculum. The American Planning Assoc. certification is an absolute joke and a real disservice to a profession that should help improve the health and wealth of a nation one block at a time. Instead, the APA perpetuates status quo urban planning with its destructive Zoning Ordinances, separation of all land uses, and auto-dependency. I hope the APA changes their stance someday when the old iron guard finally retires to let the younger generation fix their "horribly shaped cities".