- Series: Center for Environmental Structure (Book 2)
- Hardcover: 1171 pages
- Publisher: Oxford University Press (1977)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0195019199
- ISBN-13: 978-0195019193
- Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 2 x 7.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 222 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,980 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction (Center for Environmental Structure)
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The second of three books published by the Center for Environmental Structure to provide a "working alternative to our present ideas about architecture, building, and planning," A Pattern Language offers a practical language for building and planning based on natural considerations. The reader is given an overview of some 250 patterns that are the units of this language, each consisting of a design problem, discussion, illustration, and solution. By understanding recurrent design problems in our environment, readers can identify extant patterns in their own design projects and use these patterns to create a language of their own. Extraordinarily thorough, coherent, and accessible, this book has become a bible for homebuilders, contractors, and developers who care about creating healthy, high-level design.
"A wise old owl of a book, one to curl up with in an inglenook on a rainy day.... Alexander may be the closest thing home design has to a Zen master."--The New York Times
"A classic. A must read!"--T. Colbert, University of Houston
"The design student's bible for relativistic environmental design."--Melinda La Garce, Southern Illinois University
"Brilliant....Here's how to design or redesign any space you're living or working in--from metropolis to room. Consider what you want to happen in the space, and then page through this book. Its radically conservative observations will spark, enhance, organize your best ideas, and a wondrous home, workplace, town will result."--San Francisco Chronicle
"The most important book in architecture and planning for many decades, a landmark whose clarity and humanity give hope that our private and public spaces can yet be made gracefully habitable."--The Next Whole Earth Catalog
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The roof garden and cross ventilation won me and even years later I tend to look at homes or apartments in terms of how they could be made better based on this one book.
Susan Susanka's books (I own most of them) are really just this author's ideas BUT with colored photos.
The one thing I would add is SECURITY. NARROW high venting windows in all rooms (makes it difficult for burglars to get in and gives more wall space) and NO French doors but a single door (solid metal or wood) and a NARROW cannot crawl though venting window above the door AND a commercial grade security screen door so the door can be opened without a burger pushing in a cheesy Lowe's screen door. Both my French doors were removed and replaced with exactly that PLUS now there are also no worries about hurricanes/tornados blowing in French doors.
C.Alexander and company did a fabulous job putting together a very interesting and well-researched book, with neat little sketches and very humanistic approaches to things. I often find many architects' work and interviews to be artistically-focused, they having arrived at their inspiration through personal, creative impulses. What I find so refreshing about this book that I think is so rare is the psychological, humanist dynamic that pervades it. You can't get around it. This book is much more about building healthy and happy communities than about anything else, in my opinion. Go out and get it, do yourself that favor.