chapter  6
24 Pages

The re-enclosure of green space in postmodern urbanism

WithMichael Hebbert

The chapter compares the roles of green space within modern and postmodern urbanism. Twentieth-century modernism pursued an open space vision inspired by a landscape ideal of unbounded nature. It was implemented in towns and suburbs through urban renewal and highway construction, regulatory standards and open space policies. As the stock of green space increased, so did concern about its environmental and social sustainability, culminating in a paradigm shift around the turn of the century. The new vision of green space sought enclosure instead of openness, and active provision of ecosystem services instead of passive pictorial quality. The chapter describes this rethinking of town greenery, looks for its underlying social and environmental rationale, and assesses its place within a wider planning theory of postmodern urbanism.