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Train Time: Railroads and the Imminent Reshaping of the United States Landscape Hardcover – October 17, 2007
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"In his new book, Stilgoe... examines how railroads influence their physical and social environments. He speaks as a visionary for transportation change, offering numerous examples of how a resurgent rail system based on historical example could transform America.... [A]n insightful contribution for those researching transportation options... recommended for larger public and all academic libraries with transportation collections."(Library Journal)
"Here is the answer to the problem of crumbling highways, collapsing bridges, competition between trucks and autos, congested routes, commuter time increases for those who use cars, and the accident deaths of thousands of motorists, passengers, and pedestrians: Bring back the railroads!
"Stilgoe... is an expert on this subject, having laid the groundwork for his ideas in Metropolitan Corridor: Railroads and the American Scene.... The author contends effectively that trains are indeed coming back, foretelling significant cultural change."(ForeWord)
Stilgoe takes us on a fun- and fact-filled journey to bustling cities and remote locales, encouraging us to look over the horizons to broaden our appreciation of railroads.(Joseph Schwieterman, author of When the Railroad Leaves Town: American Communities in the Age of Rail Line Abandonment)
About the Author
John R. Stilgoe, Robert and Lois Orchard Professor of Visual and Environmental Studies at Harvard University, is the author of Metropolitan Corridor, Outside Lies Magic, Lifeboat (Virginia), and Landscape and Images (Virginia).
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Top Customer Reviews
Just in case citizens hadn't noticed, 2007, the year "Train Time" was published, was marked by the convergence of three major crises: an infrastructure crisis, heralded by a major report by the Urban Land Institute documenting a $3.5 trillion dollar backlog for repair, which noted that auto-centric transportation systems will have trouble meeting future transportation needs and punctuated by the August 1st collapse of the I-35 bridge in Minneapolis; a Global Warming Crisis where the melting at the poles is arriving ahead of schedule and Dr. James Hansen, dean of GW scientists, has lowered the triggering threshold for bad events kicking in from the 450-550 range to 350 ppm of CO2, which we have already exceeded; and an intensifying crisis in US and world financial markets, driven by a bursting housing bubble but spread dramatically by the risky new financial architecture that even the architects don't seem to understand very well. (And oil prices pushed to record highs, staying over 100 dollars per barrel well into early 2008.)
The rumbles of impending change - and their visual clues as well, are being detected by some other very acute observers. John R. Stilgoe, a Professor of Visual and Environmental Studies at Harvard, and author, most recently, of a book "Train Time: Railroads and the Imminent Reshaping of the United States Landscape (Univ. of Virginia Press, 2007), is a popular lecturer whose unconventional courses teach students to see in their surroundings what their too casual first glances gloss over. He also has a reputation of being one of the nation's great repositories of knowledge on American railroads in their heyday years, 1880-1935.Read more ›
That said, the writing in the book is muddled and difficult to follow. This may be a great book for a urban planning class, but for an average reader, it is overly complicated and drifts between topics. I cannot recommend it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great book by an eminent scholar of American life and landscape. Prophetic, compelling, it sees the return of railroads as a way to solve the congestion of highways that can only... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Jon
As always, the prof has perceptions beyond the obvious. Well researched, this look at the need fro reviving the rails, and what is going on in the background, should serve as a... Read morePublished on June 20, 2013 by Chris Siegel
This book goes back to the reasons America is in the jam we are today. We forgot about trains and how they built this country and then pushed aside for American arrogance.Published on January 8, 2012 by Kevo2005