garden city

All Sources -
Updated Media sources (1) About content Print Topic Share Topic
views updated

garden city, an ideal, self-contained community of predetermined area and population surrounded by a greenbelt. As formulated by Sir Ebenezer Howard, the garden city was intended to bring together the economic and cultural advantages of both city and country living, with land ownership vested in the community, while at the same time discouraging metropolitan sprawl and industrial centralization. The open layout of the garden city has had a great influence on the development of modern city planning.

The garden city was foreshadowed in the writings of Robert Owen, Charles Fourier, and James Silk Buckingham, and in the planned industrial communities of Saltaire (1851), Bournville (1879), and Port Sunlight (1887) in England. The term garden city was introduced in Howard's book To-morrow: A Peaceful Path to Real Reform (1898); it was revised (1902) under the title Garden Cities of To-morrow (reedited by F. J. Osborn, 1946). Howard organized the Garden-City Association (1899) in England and secured backing for the establishment of Letchworth (1903), designed by the architects Barry Parker and Raymond Unwin, and Welwyn Garden City (1920), designed by Louis de Soissons. Neither community, however, was an entirely self-contained garden city.

The idea spread rapidly to Europe and the United States, but it commonly resulted in residential suburbs of individually owned homes. Under the auspices of the Regional Planning Association of America, the garden-city idea was more fully realized in the community of Radburn, N.J. (1928–32) outside New York City designed by Clarence Stein and Henry Wright. Most of these satellite towns, however, failed to attain Howard's ideal, since local industries were unable to provide employment for the inhabitants, many of whom commuted to work in larger centers. The congestion and destruction accompanying World War II greatly stimulated the garden-city movement, especially in Great Britain, where the passage of the New Towns Act in 1946 led to the development of more than a dozen new communities based on Howard's idea. The idea was revived in Britain on a smaller scale in 2014 as part of attempt to ease a housing shortage.

See F. J. Osborn, Green-Belt Cities: The British Contribution (1946). M. H. Smith, History of Garden City (1963); W. L. Creese, The Search for Environment (1966).

views updated

Garden City and Garden Suburb. The concept of the Garden City was devised in England by Ebenezer Howard in order to combine the benefits of town and country, and involved the creation of a town built in the countryside with all facilities, places of work, etc. Influenced by the Garden Suburbs (low-density developments that were essentially derived from the Picturesque tradition of houses in gardens evolved by Nash and others at e.g. Blaise Hamlet near Bristol), the first Garden City was at Letchworth, Herts. (begun 1903), designed by Parker and Unwin. The ver-nacular-revival style of houses at Letchworth was influenced by the earlier Garden Suburb at Bedford Park, Chiswick, London (from 1877), and by housing developments and settlements such as Port Sunlight (from 1888) and Bournville, Birmingham (from 1879). The Hampstead Garden Suburb (from 1906) was an excellent example of low-density development in which the Domestic Revival featured prominently, but it was essentially a dormitory suburb as opposed to a Garden City, which was, in theory, largely self-contained. Germany acquired an important development at Hellerau, near Dresden, designed by Riemerschmid and Tessenow (begun 1907), and in Belgium, influenced by Geddes, Louis van der Swaelmen (1883–1929—author of Préliminaires d'art civique (1916) ) played a major part in planning the first Garden Cities at Selzaete, near Gent (Ghent) (1921–3), Kapelleveld (1923–6), and three more near Brussels, including the Cité Floreal and Boitefort. Stein promoted Howard's ideas in the USA.


K -P. Arnold (1991);
Beevers (1988);
Benoît-Lévy (1911, 1932);
Creese ed. (1967, 1992);
Darley (1975);
Fishman (1977);
E. Howard (1898, 1902, 1946, 1965);
Loo (ed.) (2003;
Meacham (1999;
Me. Miller (1992, 2002);
Muthesius & and Germann (1992)
Parsons & D. Schuyler (eds.) (2002);
S. Ward (1992)

views updated

Garden City:1 City (1990 pop. 7,410), Chatham co., SE Ga., a port of entry, distribution center, and industrial city on the Savannah River; inc. 1939 as Industrial City Gardens, renamed 1941. The city's container terminal, one of largest in the United States, is a major component of the Port of Savannah. Paper, gypsum board, roofing, and jet aircraft are manufactured.

City (1990 pop. 24,097), seat of Finney co., SW Kans., on the Arkansas River; inc. 1887. A trade center in an irrigated farm and dairy region growing wheat, sugar beets, and alfalfa, it has a gas and an oil field, cattle feedlots, and hide-processing and meatpacking plants. Farm machinery, cultured marble, and fertilizers are produced. The city has an agricultural experiment station, a zoo, and a wild game refuge.

2 City (1990 pop. 31,846), Wayne co., SE Mich., a suburb of Detroit; inc. as a city 1934. Chiefly residential but with a noted population decline, the city produces gauge systems and aluminum extrusions.

3 Village (1990 pop. 21,686), Nassau co., SE N.Y., on Long Island; inc. 1919. It is a high-income residential community, with printing, publishing, and retailing as the major industries. Garden City was founded in 1869 and planned by the merchant Alexander Stewart. In 1927, Charles Lindbergh began his historic transatlantic flight from the nearby former Roosevelt Field. Adelphi Univ. and Nassau Community College are in the city, as is the Museums at Mitchel complex, including a children's and an aviation museum.