Pier Carlo Palermo and Davide Ponzini, Spatial Planning and Urban Development. Critical Perspectives, Springer. 2010. 250 pp.

Published at: 12 April 2011

Diverse cultural traditions and professional profiles compete within the complex, controversial field of spatial planning and urban development. Through the decades the distances between the different approaches seem to grow, without finding a coherent framework which can adequately guide planning theory and practice. International planning theory has loosened its ties with the themes of architectural and city design, and tends to face mainly procedural or communicative issues. On the other hand, several trends in urban design have lost the critical tension of the modernist movement and seem to underestimate the difficulties of managing current problems of spatial development.
In this book, a set of authoritative planning paradigms is critically reviewed, documenting crucial weaknesses and several unsolved questions at the crossroads between urban planning, architecture and policy design. The authors propose to reconsider these issues in the light of selected Italian and international trends in urbanism and urban design. By developing this innovative frame of reference, the book outlines a pragmatic, interpretative, critical and design-oriented approach to contemporary planning problems.
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