In 1969 Ian McHarg laid out a new approach to land-use planning. His seminal work, Design by Nature, blazed the trail for sustainable urban development. The road was paved with good intentions. But where exactly did it lead? And where do we go from here?
Reconsidering Ian McHarg offers a fresh assessment of McHarg’s lessons and legacy. It applauds his call for environmental stewardship while acknowledging its unintended results. For McHarg’s idyllic developments at the edge of nature turned greenfield sites into suburban communities. They added to sprawl and made America more dependent on cars. And they may even have delayed the kind of urban redevelopment needed to make today’s cities more sustainable.